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Happy Birthday Singapore

Sorry to pull you up, pimpernel, but Tangs was CK Tangs, not SK......

Re the Americans - the price of everything went up when they came ashore, girls, food, taxis, etc. We had some memorable times with them, fights, booze-ups (Gee, I love your accent!!), sight-seeing and getting legless on Mateus Rose (for some reason they loved that stuff). We always seemed to fight the crew of the Bonhomme Richard when it came into port, too - no idea why. The other crews just wanted to get pissed with us or end up in a dodgy bar or ten.
Bonhomme Richard? It's Traditional.
 
They were p*ssed off ref WW2 and they saw us as being unable to protect them afterwards. Then there was the whole part of Malaysia debacle and they were of the conclusion that no one looks after them better than themselves.
If there ever was a safe place to raise kids and grow old, Singapore's it. Mind you, you'd die ten stone overweight with the food out there.
Perhaps I shoud have said 'betrayed, again'
 
Funny thing is they like us.

I know,the first Mrs Dave was from there :(

In my defence I became friendly with her father who was very ill and I used to spend most of my spare time watching American Oval (NASCAR?) racing with him. His male children were ARRSEholes, all they were interested in was their weekly payout, playing mahjong and shagging. Mother was a typical mother, always fussing, always making sure I'd got enough booze, scoff, etc.

Sadly he died in 1973 and my ex was notified by letter a month after he'd been buried. That, and a miscarriage send her over the edge and the marriage foundered.
 
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They do. I spent a few weeks there working about 15 years ago, in an official capacity. The Singaporeans were unfailingly helpful and very easy to work with - and very professional. The Malaysians, on the other hand...

Meritocracy, that's what they have. Very competitive market for home jobs. No coasters. Btw, if you thought Malaysians were bad, try the Indonesians.
 
Filthy contract, I served in a mixed troop of Malay, Chinese, Indian and Brits - all pulled their weight, although the Malays were crafty buggers when it came to guard duties. They'd select one guy and really go to town on his kit and inevitably the Malays always got the award of a night off.

We were a very close knit group and I'm still in contact with some of the lads, both Chinese and Malay, on Facebook - they meet every week in Holland Village to talk over old times and how they enjoyed their time as British Army soldiers - they even sell poppies for the RBL prior to Remembrance Sunday.
 

Auld-Yin

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Filthy contract, I served in a mixed troop of Malay, Chinese, Indian and Brits - all pulled their weight, although the Malays were crafty buggers when it came to guard duties. They'd select one guy and really go to town on his kit and inevitably the Malays always got the award of a night off.

We were a very close knit group and I'm still in contact with some of the lads, both Chinese and Malay, on Facebook - they meet every week in Holland Village to talk over old times and how they enjoyed their time as British Army soldiers - they even sell poppies for the RBL prior to Remembrance Sunday.
That's not 'being crafty' IMO, that is being switched on. This used to happen in my battalion back in the 60s when a stickman was picked as the best turned and stood down from guard - his mates had done the biz, those good at pressing did the trews and jacket, brasses did belt, cap badge, backing for the collar dogs which although not visible can be looked at by inspecting officer! Didn't work every time as sometimes squads competed also it only worked on guys who look smart in a potato sack! I never tried this as it would have been a waste of time! :(
 
Mum was born in Singapore in 1950 (Dad in Bangkok a few years before but that's another story) as my Granddad was based in Malaya - proper old school professional soldier, signed up before WWII and kept on rocking all the way through and after.

Slightly Ironic that part of my Dad's exit plan (or 'RUNAWAY!' as I call it) when they divorced was to take a job in Singapore in the 90's and was there for over 15 years, during which I visited often - my wife was there for a number of years before she went to Dubai where we met.

So we know the place pretty well.

The perfect ad for benevolent dictatorships, it was imposed quickly that you follow the rules or else early on and we'll do our best to all go forward, whereas places like the UAE where the Sheikhs are desperately trying to emulate Singapore fail because the key groups Arabs and Sub-Con Asians simply do not give a ****.
 
Tiger Balm Gardens still there?
 
That's not 'being crafty' IMO, that is being switched on. This used to happen in my battalion back in the 60s when a stickman was picked as the best turned and stood down from guard - his mates had done the biz, those good at pressing did the trews and jacket, brasses did belt, cap badge, backing for the collar dogs which although not visible can be looked at by inspecting officer! Didn't work every time as sometimes squads competed also it only worked on guys who look smart in a potato sack! I never tried this as it would have been a waste of time! :(
Stick man in my first working unit (1 ADSR) would be stood down for the duty, other than having to ‘perform’ fire picquet at the SKC in the evening. Bonus, no guard duty and a free film!
 
Our Malays used to carry their candidate for stickman on their shoulders - his feet didn't touch the ground until they came up to the guard!!
 

KnockKnock

Old-Salt
Tiger Balm Gardens still there?
Tiger Balm Gardens 1956? You couldn't miss this gorilla,....'There's our CO!', we would fall about laughing every time we saw it
DSC02127.JPG
,....
 
they meet every week in Holland Village to talk over old times and how they enjoyed their time as British Army soldiers
Its the same with the Chinese soldiers in the HKMSC and LEP's in the RN, today in Hong Kong apparently. A good bunch of lads. It seemed that generally the British, Gurkha, and Chinese soldiers in the Hong Garrison all got on together.

In Singapore in the mid eighties and early nineties I met Chinese, Malay and Indian Singaporeans who spoke well of the British miitary in Singapore, especially the RN. They didn't much care for the old colonial types though who they regarded as stuck up and snobbish.
 
Typo, CK it is.
Left in 1969 with my own MFO box full of wooden elephants and kukris. So many fond memories of the Gap and beating retreats with the Gurkha's and curry lunches in the Tanglin mess. Watched the Union jack come down, sad day!
I was in Singapore in 2012 for a few days. The only thing left of Tanglin Camp is the Garrison Church which is still going as a church. Avery old building for Singapore with some interesting pictures and details of the building and Camps history.
 
Singapore felt quite betrayed by Wilson's decision to rapidly withdraw troops, aircraft and ships from Singapore, and his rapidly escalating withdrawal programme (1966, 1968 and 1970). The Five Power Defence Agreement was meant to assure security in the region - but only the Australians and the Kiwis bother paying more than lip-service to it; The UK occasionally deploys aircraft to exercises, but both Malaysia and Singapore know that the UK's heart is not in it.
There is usually a RN Destroyer or Frigate takes part in the Naval FPDA annual exercise and when a Carrier group was in the area it was usually times so it could take part. This was certainly so in the eighties. I think that after the last troops left Singapore on 28th February 1976, all our emhasis was on BAOR, and the North Atlantic. Even after the Cold war the UK was concenting on Europe and the Middle East

Australia and New Zealand wanted to maintain closer links with South East Asia after Vietnam and when we joined the EEC in 1973, so the FPDA was good way to do this, with Australia maintaining a Sqn of Mirages,an MPA det and a Rifle Company at RAAF Butterworth. New Zealand had NZ Force South East Asia based in the old HMS Terror area at Sembawang, with the main element being 1 RNZIR at Dieppe Barracks.

With Brexit and the desire to reforge links in the area I would think there is a lot of interest in reforging links in the area, with the FPDA being an ideal forum. Plus there is talk of home basing an RN warship in the area. We already have NP1022, which maintains fuel tanks at Sembewang for visiting RN, RAN, RNZN and USN visiting ships. It has been there since 1976.

Britain plans return to the Far East.
 

KnockKnock

Old-Salt
Its the same with the Chinese soldiers in the HKMSC and LEP's in the RN, today in Hong Kong apparently. A good bunch of lads. It seemed that generally the British, Gurkha, and Chinese soldiers in the Hong Garrison all got on together.

In Singapore in the mid eighties and early nineties I met Chinese, Malay and Indian Singaporeans who spoke well of the British miitary in Singapore, especially the RN. They didn't much care for the old colonial types though who they regarded as stuck up and snobbish.
I get your drift about '...stuck up and snobbish.
But the so called 'Virgin Soldiers', the many thousands of us sent there on National Service in colonial days, did much to represent a different more down to earth type. They all, Malay, Indian, Chinese, couldn't do enough for us and the dollars we spent, helped their economy
 

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