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RIP - Lt Tom Tanswell - 58 (Eyres) Battery RA


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It is with deep regret that the Ministry of Defence has confirmed the death of Lieutenant Tom Tanswell, aged 27, of 58 (Eyre's) Battery, 12th Regiment Royal Artillery.

Lt Tanswell died as a result of injuries sustained in a road traffic accident near Shaibah Logistics Base, southwest of Basra City, on 27 October 2006, in which a military Snatch Land Rover collided with a civilian vehicle. Three other soldiers were slightly injured in the accident.

He was serving with 58 (Eyre's) Battery, normally based in Sennelager, Germany, as part of 12th Regiment Royal Artillery. The Battery currently forms part of the Danish-led Basra Rural North Battle Group, under the overall command of the UK's 20th Armoured Brigade, and is about two weeks from the end of a six-and-a-half month tour of Iraq.

Lieutenant Tom Tanswell

Lieutenant Tom Tanswell was born in London on 23 February 1979. Prior to joining the Army he had gained a degree in Management and Marketing from the University of Manchester, and amongst other things, had also been the area manager for a major supermarket chain.

He commissioned into the Royal Artillery in August 2004 and, upon successful completion of the Royal Artillery Young Officers' Course, was posted to 12th Regiment Royal Artillery taking his place as a Troop Commander within 58 (Eyre's) Battery in February 2005.

During his time with the Battery, Tom deployed on exercise to Crete and to Poland prior to deploying to Iraq for the first time on Operation TELIC 8 in April this year.

In Iraq he was a Multiple Commander, directly responsible for twelve men, manning three vehicles. He frequently escorted Danish Military Police and reconstruction teams and was well-known and respected by his Danish peers.

Tom was a tremendously enthusiastic and cheerful young man. He had a broad spectrum of interests and hobbies and this was evident, not just within the Army, but also from his time at university where he acted in university productions and was sports captain for his halls of residence.

Throughout a difficult and demanding tour in Iraq, Tom continued to motivate those around him and particularly those under his command with his good natured, yet firm and professional leadership. Tom very much had his own style of command, preferring to steer his own path. This endeared him to his many friends and colleagues in the Battery.

"Tom was an unforgettable character who we were privileged to have served with."
Major Marcus Tivey, Commanding Officer
Tom had become very much part of the fabric of life within the Officers' Mess and was always ready to be doing something or going somewhere, never content to let life pass him by.

Lieutenant Tanswell was single.

His Commanding Officer in Iraq, Major Marcus Tivey, said:

"It is with great sadness that I have to announce the death of Lieutenant Tom Tanswell.

"Tom was an immensely enthusiastic young officer, who embraced life with a vigour which inspired those around him. He was full of ideas and he always seemed to have a bright smile on his face. He wholeheartedly launched himself into everything he did, be it during the operational tour on which he was deployed, on the sports field, or socially with his many friends. He was a jack of all trades, actively participating in activities as diverse as parachuting, hockey and sailing.

"He had planned a future for himself in the Army and was due to be promoted early next year. He was applying for a flight grading, with a view to becoming a helicopter pilot.

"Professionally Tom was a fine officer, who always looked out for his men. He was leading from the front when he was killed, which typified the way he conducted himself. Prior to deploying to Iraq Tom had been praised by his superiors on numerous exercises, and while on operations he had made his mark as a rising star.

"His friends and colleagues appreciated his easy, laid back demeanour. The mark of the man was his boundless energy and infectious sense of humour, and he would often make the best of a situation with a well-selected, witty film quote.

"Tom was an unforgettable character who we were privileged to have served with. The Army and the Regiment have lost a fine young man, and the Battery has lost a good friend. All who knew Tom were touched by his zest for life; it is tragic that he should have died so close to the end of his tour.

"His individuality and style will be sadly missed by the Battery. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family at this sad time."

(c) Defence News

RIP Fella
My thoughts to the Family and all at 58 Bty and 12 Regt at the moment

Goodnight Tom, sleep well.
A great friend from Sandhurst. He will be sorely missed.

RIP buddy. You still owe me that pint.
my thoughts go out to his family. my boyfriend used to work with him, and he did a very similar course at my uni to mine so he used to chat with him a lot about that amongst other things.

its really sad news.
Tom was a wonderful man, who i was lucky enough to love. The world is a darker place without him.

Goodnight, honey... love you long time.

He is my brother and I would like to thank everybody on behalf of my family for so many messages and so much support at this incredibly difficult time.

Tom loved life and the army was his life, he was doing his duty and he wouldn't have had it any other way.

We give all our support to everybody involved in Iraq operations and to all army personnel. Stay safe and come home soon,

If you knew Tom and could share a memory with me and my parents please contact us on


we would greatly appreciate this.

Thank you

Kate Tanswell
One of the greatest blokes I've ever known. Thank you for getting me through the lows and sharing the highs.

Sorely missed by all who knew him.

Rest easy mate.
Sorry to hear about the death of Lt Tanswell. All our thoughts are with his family,friends and comrades.
From Matt Mathias ex 22AD regt
Mr_Fingerz said:

A very moving eulogy from Lt Tanswell's funeral.
I am reading the eulogy on the internet in Edinburgh Airport. A lot of people must be wondering why the big guy in the drizabone has something in his eye...most moving. God bless the Tanswell family, especially at this difficult time of the year for the bereaved.
RIP Lt Tom Tanswell, my thoughts are with family and friends.
Nous nous sommes connus il y a plus de 20 ans, tu aimais la nature, les animaux, le sport, ... je te revois encore jouer au foot, dribblant avec ton chien... Tu étais discret, espiègle, ... heureux au sein de ta famille à qui se dirigent mes pensées.
Sois en paix Tom, et d'où tu es, sèmes un peu de paix sur notre monde.

Nous nous sommes connus il y a plus de 20 ans, tu aimais la nature, les animaux, le sport, ... je te revois encore jouer au foot, dribblant avec ton chien... Tu étais discret, espiègle, ... heureux au sein de ta famille à qui se dirigent mes pensées.
Sois en paix Tom, et d'où tu es, sèmes un peu de paix sur notre monde.

We met over 20 years ago, you loved nature, animals, sport ... I still see you playing football, dribbling with your dog ... You were discreet, bit of a rogue ... happy surrounded by your family to whom my thoughts go.
Rest in peace Tom, and where ever you are, scatter a bit of peace on our world.
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