Maj Nigel Dysterre-Clark

Nigel and I served in Celle in the mid 80's. I was Dental officer and he was Int Corps both attached to 14 Sig Regt at Trenchard Bks.

I last met him walking down Whitehall in 1993, when I was on a resettlement course and he was working at MOD. We went back to his flat in Dolphin Square for a drink or three and a meal, and he and I then lost touch.

I thought that it would be nice to make contact, so Googled his name. Sadly the only entry I can find is a United Nations peacekeepers site which states that he lost his life on May 22nd 2002 in Sierra Leone. No other details are available on the internet. I would have seen if his name came up in the press or on television when he died, so what happened?? There is nothing in the Times/Telegraph/MOD/ any other website, and that seems strange to me??

If anyone can fill in the background please let me know, either here or offline to my email.



Book Reviewer
Went for a run on the beach in Sierra Leone and dropped dead. Nice man, I knew him at the same time you did. RIP.
I also knew Maj DC from Celle and endorse Glad's views of him. A gentleman who treated the other ranks well. Sadly missed. RIP.
I served with Nigel before he died - Every year , on the anniversary of his death, I raise a glass to him, Tim, Toby, Madeline & Gill - a real officer and a true gentleman - echoed by me, my wife and my children.

La a Blair math na Cairdean
I had some dealings with Nigel when he was in IDW in the Directorate when at Templer. I was out on a limb with no other Corps around and he would regularly ring for a chat and see how I was getting along whilst surrounded by thousands of Gunners. A scholar and a gentleman, sadly missed.
I came across this page whilst avoiding doing any university work, so decided to google my fathers name, finding this page. It makes me very proud to have a father who made such an impact on peoples lives. If you need anymore information just let me know and I will do all I can to help.
Thank you
Madeleine Dysterre-Clark

welcome, glad to see that arrse can keep the Corps link across the generations.
Sad news - I know this is giving my age away a little (so I'm ready for the shouts of Nig, Crow, etc) but I was in the same year at school as Toby and also knew Tim, both thoroughly good eggs. I never got to meet their father, but judging by the two lads I would suspect he was a top bloke.
We had many a laugh together in FI. I must admit to marking the back of his wellies with the "wrong"left and right. He also took part in RAF Goon baiting. A good bloke!!

"Selama'at Pergi lah!"
I have only just found out about this and am extremely saddened by the news.
As one of the lads in Block 21 in Celle, 'DC' was my boss throughout my 2 year tour there and you couldn't help but like the guy. From his seemingly bumbling absentmindedness, which disguised a sharp wit, to his infectious broad grin, the man was one of the nicest people I have ever had the pleasure of meeting.
I see that Madeleine has responded to the messages on here.
I for one Madeleine can confirm all that has been said of your father and you have every right to be proud.
The Wreath placed in 2005 remarkably still survives, although it had been moved to a new tree in Solar Camp, attributed to an unknown friend desiring that it should be more readily seen. Bravo! A new name card was affixed in late August this year by another colleague, photo attached.

With much sadness, I must add that Nigel's widow, Gill, died earlier this month before I could send her a copy. Her funeral took place yesterday, 23 September 2008 in Launceston and then Bodmin. Just as Nigel did more for his Corps than was often credited, Gill played her part for over a quarter of a century and will also be much missed and equally fondly remembered.


Years ago I was BTO at Templar Barracks, and my married quarters shared a drive with Nigel & Gill. Last night I was thinking of them fondly. I recalled when Gill had just had her first baby, and to my horror I was asked to hold him/her briefly whilst Gill popped the bonnet of her very ratty Ford capri, which wouldn't start. I then had to hand back baby (phew) and get to work on the car. Nigel was away & anyway didn't much fancy that sort of thing. I got the car going & as a reward was offered a kitten. Great.

Next memory was a mess night. A very drunk and very gay doctor was chasing an even more drunk young Nigel around the mess, following him from sofa to sofa .... it was pretty funny seeing Nigel's face once he realised the doctor's intentions! I asked the CO why we allowed a gay doctor near the lads, and he told me to back off, it was hard enough getting any doctor to attend the camp (no pun intended).

Next AM I was due on the ranges at 8AM to teach small arms to a mixed bunch. It was already 4AM & I was getting bored & worried but not allowed to leave. After the umpteenth game of bloody liar dice over the bar the CO finally took pity (that made a change I can tell you) & permitted me to leave 'early' to escort my neighbour home. I had to half carry him back the long walk, him singing lustily & glad to be in the arms of a non-gay. Strangely Gill was pleased to see us at that hour (or so it seemed) and was keen to invite me in too .... at which point Nigel sobered up quickly & decided that the beautiful Gill did not need my presence really. Shame.

I am horrified to hear that not only Nigel but also Gill are dead, I am so sorry.

It was not long after the nonsense of being expected to sensibly take charge of live firing training of recruits of both sexes, after only 2-3 hours sleep, that I decided the army was too silly a place for me to remain, and resigned.
This is extremely sad news as I have only just found out through this latest post and it has come as a bit of a shock, bearing in mind another officer, Major Chris Baker, one of my former OC 5 Sy Coy, went the same way in Iraq. Nigel was surely destined for greater things.

Nigel arrived on the Falklands around about July 1982 as I was preparing to leave. I believe he had been on one of Her Majesty's rubber boats and had managed to scrounge one of the Navy's spare computers from them. As everyone has alluded to, a real gent and a lovely man with almost the same propensity for acquiring kit as I had at the time.
Its getting ridiculous. My best man died (quite a few years ago) aged 40, jogging along cliffs is Sussex. I'm not sure that I knew Chris baker, but a common thread between both Nigel & my best man (Graeme White ex Army legal Corps) was a serious over-liking for the good life followed perhaps by feelings of guilt & a need to exercise it off again once too much had gone on.

I know that I ate a drank far too much when I was serving and that such behaviour was the norm ... why did we do it and does it still happen? Non hardened-drinkers were looked on with suspicion, silly really.

Brotherton Lad

Kit Reviewer
Michael, Your name rings a bell (if it is your name, that is). Ever in Berlin?
Yes, only briefly sadly, great place. Checkpoint Charlie was in full swing in those days.... am very bad at dates, 1978? I was painfully young & gauche though didn't know what it meant. Had about 3 months there I think, staying in a mess which mainly accommodated nurses (too young & gauche to have made much mileage of that), getting some idea of what the Int & Sy section got up to, sitting in soem Q car in the East clutching a camera & wondering if that bloody tank barrel photo was really worth the ensuing failed attempt to box us in (escape from which involved damaged hedges, front garden walls, front end of said Q car and the ego of the DDR truck driver). Dear US chums were warned against using a similar location for our holiday snaps, but of course did just weeks later, and the snapper got shot for his efforts. I'm not sure if the range of the shell DID get worked out from the photos, but the US snapper certainly worked out the range of the AK47 that got him.
I thought Berlin a great place and a great, but brief, posting. Managed several trips in to the East, some social some work. Terrific. And you?

Brotherton Lad

Kit Reviewer
83 to 86, great times. There must be another chap with that moniker and a green beret.

Unless your memory is bad and you're referring to Arthur Nicholson in March 1985.
No others my name & green beret! Yup, I have a terrible memory. I did get to Berlin a couple of times, never knew the name of the shot guy, but perhaps it was 1985. I really don't think I went there that late though, reckon was back in UK after a stint in Belgium .... where I really didn't want to go but loved it. Brilliant beer, chocolate & architecture, friendly people. But Berlin is/was special.
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