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The return of the RGBW memorials to Gorazde

According to the Army Rumour Service website 'ARRSE', there is a plan for a small expedition to Bosnia-Herzegovina (BiH) in June 2012 to reinstall two memorials to soldiers of the Royal Gloucestershire Berkshire and Wiltshire Regiment (RGBW) who died during the Regiment's first operational tour in 1994, when Battalion Tactical HQ, A and B Companies were based in Gorazde. Link to full details at the bottom of this article.

THE RGBW RETURN TO GORAZDE APPEAL - JUNE 2012

The Mission: To install and dedicate a marble memorial at each of the two sites in Gorazde (Eastern Bosnia and Herzegovina) in commemoration of the 4 x RGBW soldiers killed during 1RGBW's operational UNPROFOR tour in 1994.

The Request: Financial support or specialist advice.

The Context: In 1994-95 the newly formed Royal Gloucestershire Berkshire and Wiltshire Regiment (RGBW) conducted its first operational tour in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) as part of the United Nations Protection Force (UNPROFOR). UNPROFOR was the initial international mission[1] of several - all of which contributed to bringing stability and peace to this troubled part of the Balkans. Battalion Tactical HQ, A and B Companies 1 RGBW were based in Gorazde, one of the three Bosnian Muslim Eastern enclaves inside Bosnian Serb territory, and south of Srebenica. Tragically, during the tour, in September 1994, Privates Ben Hinton, Philip Armstrong, Martin Dowdell, and Chris Turner of A Company were killed in two separate incidents. In addition, a number of RGBW and Corps attached soldiers were injured and have suffered both short-term and long-term medical and mental effects. As is often customary in foreign areas of operational service when colleagues are lost, memorials are made and placed in-situ. Gorazde was no exception and marble from nearby Montenegro was procured, carved by a Bosnian refugee in the town, two sites were constructed by the Royal Engineer section attached to 'Gorazde Force', and the memorials placed and dedicated by the Battalion's Padre. However, in 2007, at the end of the British mission in BIH and in accordance with Army policy, all such memorials were officially returned to the UK. Sadly, this was conducted without full regimental consultation. The original marble memorials are currently in storage at the Regimental Office Gloucester.

What: A small and economical expedition consisting of volunteer ex-RGBW soldiers committed to returning the memorials and involving; the transportation of the two memorials to Gorazde, the preparation and the construction of two sites. The dedication of the memorials at each site will be conducted by an Ex- LCpl RGBW who miraculously survived the incident in which three of the soldiers were killed and who is now an ordained minister (the Rev, for those who remember). The expedition will be conducted in conjunction with the local Bosnian authorities and members of the population of Gorazde who served with us and benefited from the peace-keeping duties of the RGBW's 1994/95 tour.

When: 9-15th June 2012

Why: For our colleagues, our Regiment and ourselves. ...

Full details

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