12 Company Naval Intelligence wow I missed that one.As I look at the next Spink of London medal auction , this little gem jumped out, seem to be a highly trained and skill operator !
The very fine General Service Medal awarded to Lance-Corporal N. W. Hockley-Hills, Intelligence Corps, a trained covert operator who would detect and identify Soviet tanks in East Berlin from their wheel nuts whilst himself under cover; he later went on to provide wide-ranging HumInt during Operation Banner
General Service 1962-2007, 1 clasp, Northern Ireland (24570326 LCpl N W Hockley-Hills Int Corps), mounted as worn, extremely fine
Nicholas William Hockley-Hills was born on 19 September 1962 and enlisted at Leeds for the Intelligence Corps on 8 September 1982. To fully appreciate the carrer of Hockley-Hills, it is perhaps best to consult his typed career as provided by the recipient:
'I came from a family who's (sic) careers stretched back through the years in the RAF, so was seen as a 'traitor' for joining the Army. My ultimate aim was to join the ranks of MI5/MI6 (Box 500/600) and most of their recruitment came from the Intelligence Corps.
08SEP82 I joined the Intelligence Corps and started my 2mths basic military training at Templar Barracks, Ashford, Kent. After that I studied and trained in Operator & Security Intelligence. This involved numerous intense courses on photographic surveillance, handing Top Secret information and Atomic Information (Atomic is a classification even higher than Top Secret), Russian studies etc. The whole corse (sic) was aimed at producing a Corps member that could sit in a bush in East Germany and spot a passing tank wheel nut, and then identify this instantly with a particular tank, and then work out from that which battalion was there, its strength and capabilities…
22MAY83 completed training and was ready to utilise my Russian skills to the full, and was duley (sic) posted to Northern Ireland!
23MAY83 I arrived at Lisburn, Northern Ireland, and my luggage arrived at Lisbon, Portugal! For the first 3mths I was attached to 12 Company Naval Intelligence in Lisburn to combat the threat of the IRA's Navy… how far removed is that from Russian KGB?
SEP83 I was posted to Armagh where my duties involved IRA/INLA and UVF activities. The UVF made the finest Poteen (moonshine) which they regularly delivered at secret rendezvous points for us. Whilst there, I was seconded to the team charged with re-capturing those from the infamous Maze Prison breakout.
1984 I was posted to Londonderry where my office was, however the Intelligence Corps staff were not allowed to mix with other troops for fear of information leaks, so we were housed at Limavady. This is a small village several miles outside 'Derry, where we lived on an old WW2 airbase in Nissan huts at the end of the runway. Despite this, my actual area of operations was Sth Tyrone, Fermanagh, Sth Donegal, Cavan & Leitrim. A large area which involved dressing up in RUC or local troops uniforms and tagging on to gather intel as they searched buildings/areas. We also had to gather covert surveillance photographs of terrorist members, their families, cars and even pets. I specialised in IRA Active Service units along with my partner/operator.
One of the funniest things I recall is being handed an aerial satellite photo to exam (sic). On it I saw a farm with a tank in the yard…panic the IRA have a tank. We organised a highly dangerous and illegal entry team as this farm was over the border. When they arrived they discovered it was a skip with a scaffold pole sticking out and the "tank track" mars (sic) were where the skip lorry had reversed over the farm land… I was buying pints in the NAAFI for weeks after that!
02APR85 decided that I had stayed too long on active service as the usual term is 3mths-1yr in N.I. and I had done nearly 2yrs. So, on 15MAY85 decided to pre-voluntary resign and paid £250 to join civvy street with the intention of going into business. I infact (sic) joined the Metropolitan Police Force in 1986, and am now a serving Police Officer in Devon & Cornwall Constabulary.'
Sold with the recipient's original Regular Army Certificate of Service, which notes that he was discharged from the Intelligence Corps on 14 May 1985, his military conduct noted as 'exemplary'; MOD Form 138 - A Security Reminder on travel to or through Communist Countries: Or use of Communist Transport, named to 'LCpl Hockley-Hills N. W. 24570326', stamped 'Intelligence Corps Depot and Centre, Ashford, Kent, 15 May 1985'; with six individual and group photographs of the recipient in military and civilian clothing from around 1984 in Northern Ireland, and his small Membership Book for the Intelligence Corps Association, his details annotated to inside front cover.
£400 for one GSM and some assorted tat. I really must rethink my opinion on flogging my tin collection