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Mixing With The Jet
GDSM WALTON LEARNS TO SKI IN VAL D’SERE AND HAS THE TIME
OF HIS LIFE.
the past 5 years, Gdsm Walton has been a busy man. Let’s face
it, you don’t get much time to feel bored in one of the British
Army’s busiest battalions! On the 13th January 2006 however,
Gdsm Walton from Support Company didn’t mind the early reveille,
or the rush to grab breakfast and get on parade. On this
occasion, he was boarding a mini-bus bound for Val d’Sere in
France, destination of the rich and famous skiing jet-set.
He was one of 15 Guardsmen heading off to the slopes to take
part in the first of three Battalion Ski-Camps. Having never
tried skiing before, Gdsm Walton found the whole experience
challenging both physically and mentally. Despite the sudden
realisation that skiing wasn’t quite as easy as it looked, he
still found the time to enjoy the various distractions;
beautiful scenery and thousands of students from every corner of
Europe enjoying their gap year breaks or just a couple of weeks
away from the classroom. As a novice, Gdsm Walton and Co’ found
the long days on the slopes exhausting yet addictive. He now
hopes to take up skiing as a full time hobby. “This is one of
the best things I’ve done since joining the Army.” He boldly
asserted to one of the Non Commissioned Officers over a beer.
The highlight of the week was finally being given the
opportunity to take a run down the World Cup Downhill Ski
course, an experience that none of the Guardsmen on Ski Camp
will forget in a hurry. Despite many wobbles, slips and
gut-wrenching moments on the way down the treacherous slalom
course, all of the boys made it to the bottom on two skis,
rather than ending up as a large, fast-moving snowball with arms
The second and third Ski-Camps went on in much the same vein,
with many members of the Battalion now looking forward to next
winter and another chance to hit the slopes.
Images from the article above - hold mouse over images for
“Ski Camp rocks! By
the way…are we really getting paid for doing this?”
News in Brief:
Regimental Headquarters has agreed to fund Regimental ‘get you
in’ packs to all Coldstream Recruits who successfully cap-badge
to the Regiment at AFC Harrogate, and to those at ITC Catterick
and ATR Bassingbourn who reach the mid-point in their training
successfully. Details of the packs will be advertised in
forthcoming issues of SECOND TO NONE and they will be issued to
individuals by the Regimental Recruiting Team.
A Message From The Regimental Recruiting Warrant Officer
To All Those In Training Or About To Start
FACT: If you have attended a Coldstream Guards Look At
Life, you are 80% more likely to pass out successfully first
time round, compared to a recruit entering training without
having been on the course.
FACT: The drop-out rate of Coldstream Recruits has been
running at a mere 4% for the last six months.
So what does it mean? Quite simply, our Recruiting
Sergeants our picking the highest quality men they can find to
join the Regiment and in addition, you the recruits are rising
to the challenges of basic training in true Coldstream fashion.
Needless to say, everyone here in Battalion Headquarters is
pretty chuffed. However, do not take things for granted. Work
hard, listen to your instructors and above all, help each other.
You can also help yourself by following a few basic tips:
1. Attend all meals and eat well. Forget meals as being a social
occasion and instead treat them as re-fuelling stops. If you
don’t eat, eventually your body will stop and fall over.
2. Drink plenty of water. Do not allow yourself to become
dehydrated. This can happen even during cold weather. Avoid
fizzy drinks and coffee, but help yourself to plenty of water
3. Keep off the alcohol and get a proper nights sleep when the
training programme allows. Use the weekends to recover, do not
push your body even further by partying into the wee small
Finally, regardless of how tough things get, you can always get
through it. There are plenty of other Guardsmen who have been
through it before you. We are all still here and in one piece!
Remember, a Guardsman never says ‘never’, never says ‘can’t’,
never says ‘won’t’, never says ‘impossible’.
If you are having a wobble and you don’t feel that you want to
approach your training staff or chain of command, ring your
Recruiting Sergeant or CSM Naylor from the Recruiting Team. No
matter how bad you think things are, there is always a way
through it and we will find it for you.
We are all in this together…one team-one fight. Keep
OPPORTUNITIES IN WINDSOR
Education Centre, Combermere Barracks, Windsor.
Mil : 94253 5153 Civil: 01753 755135 e-mail:
Wed: 1100 – 1900 hrs
Thu: 1000 – 1800
Fri: 0900 – 1400
WHAT IS IT?
24 AEC is
the local academic teaching facility for the Army in
Windsor. It runs Command, Leadership and Management courses
for all rank ranges and it also houses an Army Learning
Centre. The ALC facility allows soldiers and their
dependants (wife and children) to obtain nationally
recognised qualifications through distance learning courses,
most of which can be done on computer.
WHAT CAN I
facility runs courses in five main subjects, which are:
Skills for Life (numeracy
and literacy levels 1 + 2)
Home and Office
In addition, the
staff at 24 AEC are specially equipped to assist those
suffering from dyslexia and can arrange individual teaching
for those wishing to overcome their dyslexia.
You can also take
the European Computer Driving Licence course at the ALC
DOES IT COST
courses are FREE, however some courses may charge a
small fee. One of the staff will be able to advise you.
CAN I GET FROM 24 AEC?
the Army Library Service and FREE internet access
COME AND VISIT
24 AEC AND START PUTTING YOUR SPARE TIME TO GOOD USE. IT IS
ONLY 10 MINUTES WALK FROM VICTORIA BARRACKS!
Mead, Stovell Road, Windsor.
01753 842194 e-mail:
Windsor Leisure Centre can be found by the banks of the
River Thames, just off the Dedworth Road/Slough Road
roundabout. It has a wide variety of facilities including:
include Yoga, Badminton, Netball, Trampolining, Swimming
Lessons, Smoking Cessation classes, Spinning Classes (high
intensity cycling), Aerobics Classes, Sauna.
Mon – Thu:
0630 – 2200 hrs
Fri: 0630 – 2100
Sat: 0800 – 1800
Sun: 0900 – 1800
The Coldstream Guards Look at Life Course
Haven’t joined up yet? Just thinking about it? Just
The Coldstream Guards are extremely keen to get the right kind
of recruit and likewise, a potential recruit needs to be sure
that he is committing himself to the right career. In order to
ensure that both of these things are achieved, the Regimental
Recruiting Team under WO2 Dave Naylor run regular ‘Look at Life’
The courses happen at least every four weeks and are held at
Pirbright in Surrey. The course is free of charge and you will
be given a travel warrant to enable you to get to and from the
course. In order to get on a Look at Life course you will need
to ring the number shown at the foot of each page of this
newsletter and then arrange to visit your local Coldstream
Recruiting Sergeant who can be found in your local Army Careers
There are Coldstream Guards recruiting Sergeants at the
Redruth, Barnstaple, Croydon, Chelmsford, Leicester, Sheffield,
Doncaster (from April 06), Leeds, Middlesborough, Newcastle and
(by May 06) Sunderland.
Once you have expressed your interest and been booked onto a
course, you will receive a full briefing pack, travel documents,
etc. The courses run from Tue-Fri and a rough breakdown of the
course is as follows:
Arrive at Pirbright by 1400 hrs. Settle into accommodation.
Conduct 1.5 mile run and press-ups/sit-ups as a basic physical
assessment. This is followed by team building exercises in the
gym. Dinner at around 1700 hrs, followed by some briefing DVDs
and a verbal brief for the next day. Then a chilled out evening
in the local welfare room and an opportunity to ask questions of
the staff. Bed and lights out by 2300 hrs.
Early start at 0630 hrs, breakfast, then onto some more
challenging team building exercises. Basic instruction on the
Assault Course then lunch. Following lunch, a four mile cross
country run, after which there is a team race over the Assault
Course. Dinner, then another briefing evening.
Up and breakfast, into smart clothes. Visit London (Wellington
Bks, Royal Palaces, watch changing of the Queens Guard). Travel
to Windsor to visit the 1st Battalion. Tour of barracks and
demonstrations by specialist platoons, then visit the Sergeants
Mess for tea/coffee and a briefing by the Regimental Recruiting
Warrant Officer. Return to Pirbright for dinner and debrief.
Individual debriefings up until 0930 hrs, then move to train
station for journey home.
Look at Life is our most successful recruiting initiative.
Attendees who join the Coldstream Guards having performed well
on the course are more than 80% more likely to pass out of basic
training successfully the first time, compared with those
recruits who have not attended Look at Life.
There is no obligation to join up, if you attend the
course. If it’s not for you, then so be it. If it turns
out to be your cup of tea then you will have already taken a
valuable step towards becoming a fully trained Coldstream
Guardsman. So if you have been thinking about it, and you have
what it takes to become a member of the longest serving regiment
in the British Army, then take that step and either speak to the
Recruiting Office or ring our contact number below. Go on, we
Images from the Look at Life!
A visit on the Look at Life
SCRUM DOWN IN EAST YORKSHIRE!
COLDSTREAM GUARDS v GOOLE SELECT 15
Thursday 16th February 2006 the Battalion Rugby Team returned to
the field after a nine month absence due to their tour of duty
in Iraq. The freshly re-formed team went into action against a
Goole Select 15 side at the Westfield Banks Rugby Club in Goole,
East Yorkshire. The kick-off was at 2000 hrs under floodlights
with a crowd of 300 spectators, which included members of the
local police, ambulance, Army Cadets and members of the Hull
Branch of the Coldstream Association.
The match was fiercely contested and the weather was suitably
cold and wet. Despite a valiant performance by the Battalion,
Goole’s well drilled side finally managed to get past the
Coldstreamers (but only just!) Throughout the match, the
Battalion team rotated its full squad through the pitch in order
for every member to get a run out after such a long time away
from the sport. The match ended as a win for the local side, 10
– 0 to Goole, but it was a victory which they had been made to
work extremely hard for.
Afterwards, the Battalion team was well looked after in the
Rugby Club and also managed to attract three new recruits to the
regiment in the process! All members of the team are
congratulated on a fine performance, both on the rugby field and
on the recruiting front too!
Stepping Out For Charity
THE COLDSTREAM THREE PEAKS EXPEDITION
As a further demonstration of the Coldstream Guards’ link with
the Yorkshire area, a joint charity
was mounted recently by members of the 1st Battalion and members
of the Goole Mountaineering Club. On Boxing Day 2005, the team
of five Coldstreamers and five Civilians set out to tackle the
three highest peaks in England, Scotland and Wales respectively.
As most people are aware, those peaks are Scafell Pike, Ben
Nevis and Snowdon.
Over a period of three days, the team drove over six hundred
miles and successfully completed the ascent of all three peaks
despite some grim weather. They were joined on the last day by a
number of wives and girlfriends for the ascent of Snowdon. The
result of their effort was over a thousand pounds raised for the
Sheffield Children’s Hospital Cancer Ward. Just as commendable
was the fact that the Coldstreamers had given up three days of
their well deserved post-Iraq leave to take part in the
On Thursday 16th February 2006, during a recruiting surge in
Sheffield, some of the members of the expedition went to the
Sheffield Children’s Hospital to formally hand over the cheque
for £1004. It was a fitting end to a day that saw 112 Sheffield
lads register their interest in joining the Coldstream Guards.
18 of those lads are currently being processed by the Coldstream
Recruiting Sergeant in Sheffield.
Image: Richard Collins and Mark McHugh of Goole
Mountaineering Club along with CSM Roffey and LCpl Linden of the
1st Battalion handing over their cheque to the hospital staff.
Around And About
“We are definitely getting too old for this game!”
LSgt Thompson and Sgt Jackson feel the pressure during rugby
What do you mean ‘I can hear
it ticking’ ?
No.2 Coy conduct trip-flare training in Wales
“…and once you’ve filled up
my car with all that petrol, you can give it a good wash too.”
Gdsm McHugh overseas the Look at Life course during a strength
"...by the left..."
Sgt Pickersgill puts No.6 Platoon through its paces during the
Commanding Officers Drill Test
in preparation for the Battalion’s return to ceremonial duties.
Lieutenant Colonel GCC Waters
Commanding Officer 1st Battalion Coldstream Guards
On the 24 Feb 06, Lt Col GCC Waters assumed the appointment of
Commanding Officer of the 1st Battalion Coldstream Guards.
Previously he has commanded the Anti-Tank Platoon, No.1 Company
and No.2 Company within the Battalion. He recently spent two
years as the Adjutant of the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst
prior to being promoted and appointed to command the Battalion.
Lt Col Waters is determined that the Regiment will continue to
exemplify the core values of the British Army, those being
Selfless Commitment, Courage (both moral and physical),
Discipline, Integrity, Loyalty (upwards and downwards in the
chain of command and sideways to other members of the team) and
Respect for Others. He is also determined to ensure that as a
Regiment the Coldstream Guards excel in the core skills of
infantry soldiering, those being shooting and physical fitness.
Image: Lt Col GCC Waters, who assumed command of 1st Battalion
Coldstream Guards on 24 Feb 06
AN EDITORIAL BY THE REGIMENTAL RECRUITING WARRANT OFFICER.
Standing as a guest in the Officers Mess a couple of weeks ago,
I glanced across the ante-room and my gaze fell upon the
Colours. As my eyes took in the familiar sight of the two
Colours I experienced that same old tingle at the back of my
neck. The Regimental Colour, effectively the Regiment’s Identity
Card, protectively crossed the rich crimson silk of the Queen’s
Colour. The Queens Colour, blessed by the hand of Her Majesty is
our Royal License to bear arms on behalf of the Sovereign.
Emblazoned upon the colours are 44 of our Regiment’s most
notable battle honours, and as I studied the columns of
embroidered place names, I came across the title WATERLOO.
my brain began to download the story of the Coldstream Guards at
Waterloo. To recount the full story here would be well beyond
the scope of this newsletter, however, in brief outline, the
story of the Coldstream at Waterloo goes something like this…
On 18th June 1815, Wellington’s British-Allied army of 68,000
men faced Napoleon’s 76,000 veteran French troops. Only two
thirds of Wellington’s troops were of any real quality and he
was desperate for assistance from the Prussians who were
somewhere off to his left flank, being pursued by another 30,000
Frenchmen. His right flank was open which worried him greatly,
as it was in this direction that he would need to head in order
to gain the safety of the channel ports in the event of a French
victory. To that end, he decided to fortify the Chateau de
Hougoumont, a large walled farm, which was situated on his right
flank and well forward of his main defensive position. He knew
that the French would have to overwhelm this strongpoint in
order to turn the flank. Accordingly, he garrisoned Hougoumont
with his finest troops, the Foot Guards. Initially, the three
light companies of the 1st, Coldstream and 3rd Guards occupied
the buildings, supported by some Hannovarian troops. The
garrison was commanded by Lt Col James McDonnel of the
The Battle of Waterloo commenced at approximately 1130 hours and
for the next eight hours, the defenders of Hougoumont found
themselves under constant attack from the French. The crisis
point of the battle for Hougoumont came when a group of
Frenchmen led by a huge Lieutenant smashed through the North
Gate. Immediately, a group of thirteen Officers and Non
Commissioned Officers from the Coldstream and 3rd Guards counter
attacked, driving the French back through the gate at the point
of bayonet and sword. Lt Col McDonnel and Cpl (later Sgt) Graham
of the Coldstream Guards put their shoulders to the gates and
forced them shut. They held the gates closed until an improvised
locking bar was dropped into the latches. Later, the farm
buildings were set on fire by enemy artillery but still the
defenders fought on. Eventually, with the exception of two
companies who remained on the main defensive position with the
Colours, the whole of the 2nd Battalion Coldstream Guards were
despatched to reinforce Hougoumont. The Battalion swept through
the orchard around Hougoumont, driving the French back with
volleyed fire and a spirited bayonet charge.
As history records, in the late evening, the Prussians arrived
on the French flank, just as the 1st Foot Guards shot Napoleons
Imperial Guard to pieces with a fearsome display of musketry.
The French army broke and fled and the Allies had won the Battle
of Waterloo. Hougoumont remained in British hands throughout. At
the end of the day, over 4,000 dead or wounded Frenchmen lay in
the vicinity of the smouldering Chateau. Wellington, in his
despatches after the battle, made two significant comments.
“The outcome of the battle rested on the closing of the gates
“None but the British could have held Hougoumont, and only
the best of them at that”
But the defence of Hougoumont had cost the Coldstream Guards
dear. Many a good Coldstreamer sacrificed himself in the defence
of that humble old Chateau. As I gazed at that embroidered name,
WATERLOO, I was minded that every stitch in that battle honour
represented the life of a good Coldstreamer who knew his duty
and did it. The Colours therefore are more than just a symbol of
identity. They serve as the Battalion’s mobile cenotaph; a
reminder of those who have gone before and earned our Regiment
the reputation that it enjoys. Officer, Warrant Officer, Non
Commissioned Officer and Guardsman, shoulder to shoulder,
watching each others backs, fighting for each other, second to
ONE TEAM – ONE FIGHT
training as at 17 Mar 06
FUTURE COLDSTREAMERS PAY
TRIBUTE TO THOSE THAT HAVE GONE BEFORE
In November, the trainee Guardsmen from No.21 Platoon, Guards
Company, Infantry Training Centre Catterick conducted a
battlefield tour of the World War One battlefields of the Somme
and Ypres. During their tour they took time out with their
Barrack Room Instructor, LCpl Kelly, to track down the graves of
Coldstreamers who had given their lives during the conflict.
Pictured are TGdsm Dutton, Freeman, Hill, Morris, Smith and LCpl
Kelly at the grave of an unknown Coldstreamer.
No.21 Platoon pass out on the 24 Mar 06 and join the Battalion
on 18 Apr 06 following Easter Leave.
Second to None
The Regimental Newsletter
1st Battalion Coldstream Guards
Produced by the Coldstream Guards Regimental Recruiting Team
copyright, designed and maintained by A.J Brady