Letter to Alan from Brian Sutton ex RASC.

28 Feb

Hi Alan

I have read through your story and although not being a national serviceman, I managed to associate easily with your adventures. My service was always on the home front until the Suez Crisis broke out in 1956. I remember so well being on the dock side ready to embark for Aden.
Suffice to say I was yanked off both postings due to me being a member of the swimming squad and as well as the battalion football team. At the time I was stationed at 1st training battalion R.A.S.C. Yeovil and I was there for quite some time.
My claim to fame was I managed to spend almost 7 months of this time and the only item of army clothing I wore were socks. The rest of my uniform was an army issue track suit and running shoes. Oh I forgot to mention I carried the most potent weapon one could handle in the R.A.S.C. and that was a clipboard with the names of either the football team or the swimming squad signed by Captain Birrel O.C. of the football team or Major Morrison O. C. of the swimming. I also managed to get away wearing a civilian crash helmet whilst doing a stint as the Company Despatch rider. I found myself on 7 days confined to barracks for ignoring the Adjutants orders to get army issue head gear. However later I did revert to wearing the civvie gears again through the courtesy of Major Morrison, who happened to be the Medical Officer. He issued me with a chit stating unfit to wear regulation headgear due to headaches! I must admit it was a trip to the R.E.M.E. workshops to get my bright red helmet painted yucky khaki
I cannot complain about the grub, because I happened to be the junior NCO in charge of the kitchen general duty hands (usually national service guys) who came on after meals to clean out the mess hall.
As a driving instructor of sorts it was our duty to take out the territorials from the billets next door to our camp. If you are familiar with the camp at Yeovil, you would know this happened to be the girls who were doing their training. What a detail this was in the summer months as a fresh batch was turned over every three weeks.
There are many more stories I could go into over the tree years I did service in the R.A.S.C. One thing I am certain about is the facts that like you and all who served. The experience and training given in those times has been invaluable ever since.
I would like to wish all my ex- comrades and friends all the best wherever you are

Take care

Brian Sutton

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