The Parachute Regimental Association

(Nottingham Branch)

Charity Number: 1124238

Nottingham Branch Meetings Have now resumed:

Our Meeting Nights have now changed from the 3rd Wedesday of the month to the 1st Wednesday of the month. 

Official meetings start at 20:00 hrs and Social meetings commence from  19:30 hrs. Doors open at 19:30 hrs for both.

We are now back to our meetings again. Through the year we will have two social meetings where we socialize and have a buffet style event, and every 3rd meeting we have an official meeting. Members are updated by our Secretary, Brian Williams on what is happening via Email and Paper mail for those not on the net to keep everyone up to date on events and news etc. You can also find out about what is happening across the Country by visiting the Main website of the Parachute Regimental Association Headquarters, who print off monthly news letters and information fo all to see.


Image description
Image description


29th July 1938 - 30th November 2016

Brian was a Nottingham Branch Member for approximately 9 years, and a proud former member of 1 PARA. He was a regular attendee to the branch up until his final year, when his health deteriorated. His funeral was well attended and he will be sadly missed by our members. Our condolences go to Brian's Wife Jean Savage and there family.

Image description
Image description

Above: Branch members at Brian's Funeral


Image description

Kenneth Henry Hunt.

During the end of March the Branch were contacted by Ken's family to ask if we could represent the Parachute Regimental Association at Ken's funeral, and although Ken was not known to the Branch, we were honoured to attend and be able to find out Ken's military background at the service.

Ken was born on the 18th of March 1928, but like many, not wishing to miss out on the War, he lied about his age, telling the recruiting staff that he was born in 1925.

Ken did his parachute selection at Hardwick Hall followed by his parachute course at RAF Ringway and went on to serve as one of Lt Col. Pine-Coffins men of the 7th Parachute Battalion. Ken took part in the D-Day airborne landings to capture Pegasus Bridge, and would continue with his battalion across Europe. At the end of service time with the 7th Battalion, like many, he was posted to 3rd Parachute Battalion and served in Palestine. During his time with 3 Para he was also selected for the S.A.S Regiment, doing tours with them.

After the War Ken served down the coal mines and worked with the Pit Rescue teams.


Image description

On Monday the 27th of July 2015 around 40 members of the Parachute Regimental Association were present for the Honour guard of John Stollery from the following Branches; Nottingham, Derby, Newark, Lincoln, Sheffield, Chesterfield and Spalding, and included representatives from the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 12th Parachute Battalions, as well as Airborne engineers, medics, gunners and REME Airborne units. Membership also included the whole age range from WW2, right up to a serving Royal Engineer from 299 Parachute Squadron Royal Engineers, who is a member of The Newark Branch. Major David Almond (7RHA) of Spalding Branch took charge of the honour guard parade. It was a shame that no serving members of 2 were available to attend, but the attendance of the Parachute Regimental Association, and former friends from 2 PARA made up for it.


John Stollery's close friend from 2 PARA, Kenny Fuller, talked about his time in service with John, and Kenny also read out a letter to the congregation from Robin Horsfall, ex 2 PARA and 22 SAS, who had also served with them both during their early days in the Parachute Regiment.


John was tragically killed while shielding his wife from an ISIS terrorist attack while they were on holiday in Tunisia with their Son on the 26th of June. In total 38 tourists were killed by the lone gunman, before he was killed by security forces. John had shown true courage in the face of the attacker and his actions saved the life of his wife Cheryl. Their Son Mathew had not been with them at the time of the shooting so was lucky not to have witnessed the horror of what happened.


John had been a social worker, working with children during his career after the Army, and was loved and liked by all that met him.  Friends and work colleagues spoke at his funeral service, which showed what a good life he had led.

Mark Holding (Treasurer)




Robert "Bob" Pearse

1934 - 2015

Image description

          Funeral Service of Robert "Bob" Pearse of Nottingham Branch

                                             Friday 24th April 2015

Today Branch members attended the funeral of Bob Pearse of Nottingham Branch. Bob had not been able to attend our meetings over the past 12 to 18 months, due to illness. He had suffered with Parkinson's disease and cancer, and died on the 12th of July 2015 in the care of his nurses, and surrounded by his family.

Bob was born in Belfast on the 11th of December 1934. The Son of a Dancer (Mother) and his Father was a comedian. Bob grew up in Glasgow Scotland as a boy and had the job as a milkman when he left school, before joining the Army in 1952. Bob served with the 2nd Battalion the Parachute Regiment and was deployed to Austria, Cyprus and the Suez Canal zone. He completed 7 years with the 2nd battalion and was even recorded in a book when he was in Cyprus, when he and a friend called O'Donnell captured some terrorists, along with a large arms cache.

After leaving the Army Bob became a fireman on a steam train, then later a driver of passenger diesel engines.

Bob and his wife, Rose who were married in 1955, and would later live in Spain for 5 years. Bob used to run 13 miles a day with his dogs. On returning to England he came to Bulwell and was a member of the Royal British Legion, as well as the Nottingham Branch of the Parachute Regimental Association, where his Grandson Sam Childs used to bring him to our meetings for approximately two years, before Bob became too ill to travel. Bob and Rose have a large family, which included 6 children, 14 Grand Children, and 10 Great Grand Children.

Bob will be missed by all the Nottingham Branch members that came to know him. Our condolences go out to all of Bob's family and friends.

Donations were split between Parkinson's UK, Nottingham Branch and Dementia UK.

Mark Holding (Treasurer)

Bellow: Poem read by Bob's Grandchildren

Image description

Brian Toseland

1939 -2015

Image description

Brian Toseland was born on the 29th of July 1939. He joined the Parachute Regiment in 1956, serving with 1 PARA. After his time in 1 PARA Brian decided to joined the fire service and had a full 30 year career with the Nottinghamshire fire brigade. 

Brian was one of the original members of the Nottingham Branch of the Parachute Regimental Association from the early 1960s, and was a regular attendee right up until his diagnosis of cancer back in 2012. He was given just six months to live, but lasted two and a half years. Brian was in good spirits right up until the end and showed the courage of a true Airborne Warrior. He will be sadly missed by his family, close friends and all members of the Nottingham Branch of the Parachute Regimental Association. 

Brians service and funeral was held at Bulwell chapel's North cemetary on Wednesday 29th of April 2015. He was buried next to his Father. His funeral service was joined by an honour guard from both the Nottinghamshire Fire Brigade and the Parachute Regimental Association, and the chapel was not large enough for all of his friends to share on the day. He had a great send off, fitting for such a well liked man.

Mark Holding (Treasurer)

Image description

Byrn Cullis

1939 - 2015





Above Right:  

Bryn Cullis at Wollaton Hall with an American re-enactment member during the visit by US WW2 508th veterans of the 82 Airborne Division in 2009. 


Bryn Cullis had been a long time member of the Nottingham Branch, although not attending in previous years, he played a big role over the years and contributed to the causes of the Parachute Regiment and to the Parachute Regimental Association.  Bryn was born in 1939 and joined the Parachute Reigment around 1956, serving with 3 PARA until the early 1960s. After regular service with the Parachute Regiment Bryn joined 16 Lincoln Indipendant Pathfinders Company at its Lincoln location. He was a proud member of the only reserve pathfinder company of its time and attended 16 Company reunions after service, including the 16 Company Christmas dinner reunions held at Bestwood Lodge, near Nottingham.Bryn's funeral service was held on Wednesday 8th of April at Bramcote Crematorium, and around 200 people were in attendance. Bryn was involved heavily in the haulage profession during his civilian career, and many members of this community attended, along with former members of the Parachute Regiment. Bryn, even though being ill over the years took part in arduous charitable events, including charity walks along entire length of the Nottingham and Grantham canal with other Nottingham Branch members, and the Penyfan Hill Climb in South Wales, helping to raise £1000s of £s over the years for the Airborne Charities.Bryn will be sadly missed by his family, close friends and the Airborne Brotherhood.


Mark Holding (Treasurer)


Above: Members of Nottingham Branch during a break in their Nottingam and Grantham canal sponsored walk to raise money for the Parachtue Regimental Charities. Bryn can be seen kneeling in the centre of the photo.





24511890 Colour


Sergeant   Stephen (Baz) Alan Bardsley




I am sorry to inform you that Baz Bardsley (MM Goose Green) died suddenly yesterday.    EULOGY In the early hours of 28th May, the 2nd Battalion The Parachute Regiment launched an attack to take enemy positions in the area of the Darwin and Goose Green settlements on the Island of East Falkland. Lance Corporal Bardsley was a Section Commander during the night advance on Goose Green.He led his men in a series of close quarter attacks on enemy positions. As the dawn came his men were pinned down by enemy fire. Unruffled, he organised an orderly withdrawal. In withdraw- ing one of his men was wounded; disregarding his own safety, Lance Corporal Bardsley returned to rescue him. Thereafter, he continued to lead his men with distinction in further actions through the day.Lance Corporal Bardsley showed impressive leadership and courage in action."British Empire Medal (LG 29th June, 1991) 24511890 Sergeant Stephen Alan BARDSLEY, The Parachute Regiment Recommendation :You were posted to the United States Army's 82nd airborne division in April 1990 where you had been employed as a rifle platoon Sgt on deployment to the Persian Gulf you demonstrated your powers of innovation by designing and organising realistic and effective field firing facilities that proved to be critical in achieving required standards of operational readiness in the battalion. During the operation phase of the fighting it was your display of initiative, the ability to inspire your men and a readiness to share and apply your experience from the Falklands war that contributed so greatly to the success of your unit missions and so, Colour Sergeant Bardsley, I am commanded by Her Majesty the Queen to present to you the medal of the order of the British Empire for meritorious service.United States Bronze Star Medal (LG 8th June, 1993) 24511890 Staff Sergeant Stephen Alan BARDSLEY, BEM, MM The Parachute RegimentFor exceptionally meritorious achievements in support in actions against a hostile force in the Persian Gulf from 17 January 1991 to 20th of March 1991 while assigned to Company C. Second Battalion 505th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 82nd Airborne Division. As the First Sergeant and Infantry Platoon Sergeant, Colour Sergeant Bardsley's performance in combat operations was a key factor that enabled the 82nd Airborne Division in conjunction with coalition forces to implement United Nations Security Council resolutions, end Iraqi aggression and free the country of Kuwait. His devotion in duty, aggressiveness and ability to excel while under great pressure contributed significantly to the successful accomplishment of the mission. Colour Sergeant Bardsley demonstrated the high ideals and professionalism exemplified by the airborne tradition. His outstanding performance in support of the combat mission reflect distinct credit upon himself, the 82nd Airborne Division and the United States Army Colour Sergeant Stephen (Baz) Alan Bardsley a Mancunian joined the Parachute Regiment in 1979. After training and gaining the coverted Red Beret he was posted to Northern Ireland in January 1980 serving at Ballykinler. In 1982 with the Battalion he embarked to the South Atlantic, serving in B Company under the command of Major John Crossland MC and 2 Para OC Colonel H Jones VC. On the journey south then Lance Corporal Bardsley had a disagreement with a fellow Para resulting in a fight, the two men would once again be involved in another scrap, but this time on the field of Goose Green, against the overwhelming Argentine forces. Bardsley saw his fellow bruiser go down hit by a 50 Calibre round, without hesitation he went in and pulled him out. This is the man mentioned in the MM citation. Following the Falklands war he rose through the ranks and now with the rank of Colour Sergeant in 1990 he was selected for an exchange with the US Army and was posted to Fort Bragg, attached to the 82nd US Airborne Division, He some gained the respect of his US counterparts and was acting as a Platoon Sergeant with the 2/505th Recon Platoon, when orders came through for deployment of the Platoon to the Gulf, without hesitation he hopped on the transport plane and was deployed with his Recon unit. For his combat operational service he was awarded the US Bronze Star. and the British Army recognised his dedicated efforts with the award of the British Empire Medal as described in the recommendation. Returning from the Gulf he remained with the 82nd until April 1992 when he returned to the Regiment and took up the duties of CQMS Headquarters Company. After further postings, he left the regiment in 2001.

Image description

Alan Bettes

21st February 1924 - 2014

 1st Air Landing Light Regiment - Royal Artillery 

1st Airborne Division

(Newark Branch PRA)

On Tuesday 8th of April 2014 members of Newark, Lincoln and Nottingham Branches attended the funeral of Alan Bettes. Alan had been a member of the Newark Branch, since its beginnings ten years ago.


Alan joined the Royal Artillery and was part of the Air landing Brigade of the 1st Airborne Division. He served in North Africa, Italy, Arnhem, Norway and Palestine.


Image description

Above: Alan as a young soldier in the RA Air Landing Brigade

Image description

Above: Alan after the wreath laying ceremony at 

Cromwell Lock Memorial - September 2013

Tom Hill

Died 10th March 2014

(Chesterfield Branch PRA)

Image description

On Thursday 20th of March members of Nottingham Branch attended the funeral of Tom Hill, a Branch member of Chesterfield Branch. Tom is the last surviving member of the Bruneval Raid living in the United Kingdom. Tom also was a founder member of the Parachute 2 club, which meet annually at Stoke Rochford Hall, where 2 Para were based during the second World War. An officer and senior NCO's also attended Tom's funeral held at the St Columba Church in Sheffield, who had travelled to the funeral service from Colchester. Serving 2 Para soldiers, along with Chesterfield, Sheffield, Wakefield, Nottingham and Cleethorpes Branch Standards and Branch members formed the Honour Guard.

Image description

Above: Secretary of Chesterfield Branch, Dave Mellors, with 2 Para soldiers and PRA Standards in the background.

John "Chop" Hampson

1943 - 2014


On Monday the 17th of March 2014 members of Nottingham and Newark Branches of the PRA and former members of 2 Para attended the funeral of John Hampson. Stuart McNair of Chesterfield Branch played the last post, and George Worthington of Nottingham Branch presented the Branch Standard.

John served with Nottingham Branches Chairman, Michael O'Connor, in the signals platoon of 2 Para during the 1960s. John was a very good competitive runner and footballer, and as a young man he also played for the junior team of Nottingham Forest Football Club. 

John’s funeral service was held at Wilford Crematorium, near Nottingham. He will be sadly missed by his Airborne Brothers, some who had travelled down from Yorkshire to pay their respects.

Image description

Above: Honour Guard at John Hampson's funeral

Archibald Norman Watson

1924 - 2013

(Chesterfield Branch PRA)

Image description

Leslie Nicholson


(Leicester Branch PRA)

Leslie was born and brought up in the North East from a coal mining area. His Father, not wanting him to go down the mines, Leslie moved to Coventry, where he trained as an engineer. He moved back to the North East during the blitz, but moved back again when things calmed down. Leslie Joined the Parachute Regiment in late 1944 and by 1945 was training in jungle warfare, ready to go to the Far East towards the end of the Japanese campaign. This all came to an end, when he and his battalion were sent to Palestine, where he remained until 1947. After leaving the Army, Leslie married his wife in 1948.


Leslie was the Secretary to the Leicester Branch of the Parachute Regimental Association, and was a familiar face at events and other Branches within the Midlands region. Leslie died at the end of September 2013 and his service held at Leicester crematorium on October 13th 2014. He will be missed by the many friends he made throughout the Parachute Regiment Association.


Image description
Image description

Dennis Savage


(Derby Branch PRA)

(Army No. 14697368)

12th April 1925 - 12th September 2013

8th Parachute Battalion

6th Airborne Division

On Friday the 25th of September 2013 members of Nottingham and Derby Branches of the Parachute Regimental Association attended the funeral of Dennis Savage, which was held at Markeaton Crematorium near Derby. 

Dennis joined the Parachute Regiment in 1944, where he trained at Hardwick Hall in Derbyshire, which was at the time the depot for selecting military parachutists before their parachute course at RAF Ringway (Manchester Airport) Following his training Dennis was posted to the 8th Battalion of the Parachute Regiment. The 8th Battalion was known as the Midlands catchment area battalion and was part of the 6th Airborne Division. 

During active service Dennis parachuted and faught with the battalion at the Ardenes (Battle of the Bulge), and largest Airborne operation in history over the Rhine during "Operation Varsity" in 1945. Men of the 6th Airborne division have said that this battle was even more contested than the Airborne assault during D-Day on the 6th of June. After European operations Dennis also served in India and Palestine. Dennis left the Parachute Regiment in 1947.

As a boy, Dennis was educated at Granby Street School in Ilkeston, Derbyshire, and his civilian jobs included time down the coal mines, which almost cost him his life. Dennis ran his own public house with his wife, which they held for 23 years, at the Newdigate Arms in West Hallam, well known for its good food and drink. 

The Nottingham Branch would like to send it's condolencies to Dennis's family and friends.

Image description
Image description

Above: Left Dennis in his Parachute Regiment uniform and Right: Proudly wearing his Para tie.

David Bellamy

(Nottingham Branch) 

Died 13th February 2013

16 Company (Lincoln) Pathfinders

David Bellamy was a former member of 16 Coy Pathfinders and a members of the Nottingham Branch of the Parachute Regimental Association. Although the Branch members had not seen David for a long time, he was still remembered by some of our longer serving members. Donations were made to Cancer Research UK in memory of David at the wishes of his family. The Nottingham Branch wishes David's family our deepest sympathy.

Frederick Pykett

(Nottingham Branch)


16th January 1942 - 10th February 2013


16 Company (Lincoln) Pathfinders


Frederick Pykett “Fred” was born in the Meadows Nottingham on the 16th of January 1942. He attended Wadsworth Road School, before attending secondary education at Trent Bridge School. Fred enjoyed the Army cadets to
such an extent that as soon as he was old enough, he joined 16 independent Company The Parachute Regiment, later to become the Pathfinders. He travelled to Cyprus and Singapore and did several exercises in Scotland, although he never got to to see much of Scotland, as he parachuted in by night and marched out before dawn.

Fred left the Regiment in 1964, while still in his early 20s. He was a jack of all trades and worked in a gun factory. Made Pool tables, which were just a few

of the things he turned his hand to. He eventually moved further North to Sheffield, where he worked in the Steel industry. In 1966 Fred married Sandra, and although the marriage didn't last, many positive things came out of it, including the birth of his Son David, in 1971. Fred gained employment as a stoker in Nottingham, and it was while employed there, that he met Marie, and they married on the 10th of December 1976. In 1978 Fred celebrated two firsts; a holiday to
the Maid Marion Club at Chapel, and the birth of their daughter, Donna. In 1979 Fred moved to a new job at the City Hospital. Five years later when Fred was in his early 40s David was born. Fred continued to work at the City Hospital for a total of 27 years.


Fred liked to socialise at the pub. He liked his family holidays at Chapel, on the East Coast, and he loved to train the Army Cadets at the Henry Mellish School. He loved to go on the camps, and was at home on  the rifle range. Fred undertook charity work and was a long time member of the Nottingham Branch of the Parachute Regimental Association. During August 2011 Fred took part in a sponsoured walk with other members of the Nottingham Branch. They walked the length of the Nottingham and Grantham Canal to raise money for wounded Paratroopers and raised over £2655 for the Afghanistan Trust. While with the Parachute Regimental association Fred was able to catch up with his old friends from 16 Company, such as Ken Sellars and Mick Franklin. He made new friends from other battalions and units within the Parachute Regimental Association, and they all enjoyed his sense of humour.


 The branch will miss Fred's dry sense of humour and the great character that he was. He will be sadly missed by us all.


Mark Holding

1st March 2013




Ken Sellars


"I first met Fred in 1962 when i joined the 16th Independant Company

[Para Regt] Fred and i were both members of the Boxing team and got on very well together. He could always be relied on to raise a laugh, even in the most trying of circumstances. Fred was one of my best friends and i will miss him very much, Freda, my wife knew him as long as i did [51years] I can only hope that Marie and family take some comfort in the fact that we both feel privilaged to have known Fred" . "Ken and Freda Sellars".



Image description
Image description

Leslie Allsopp

20th September 1923 - 23rd January 2013

Para Gunner - Forward Observer

6th Airborne Division

Leslie Allsopp worked as a tiler, before joining the Army. He joined the 53rd anti tank Regiment, Royal Artillery in 1942. In 1943 it became the 53rd field Regiment Royal Artillery. After Airborne training it became 53rd Air Landing Regiment, which was part of the 6th Airborne Div. After Leslie completed his glider training, he applied for parachute training and completed course 101 at RAF Ringway between January 31st and 13th February 1944.


On his return to his Regiment he became a member of the forward observation observers (FOO's) and was attached to the Parachute Regiment for Artillery Support and was attached to 8 PARA battalion. On D-Day 5th / 6th of June 1944 he was sent to Caen, France to provide the 8th, 9th and 12th Parachute Battalions with artillery support against two German Gun emplacements at Merville and Breville.


After Breville had taken place, a misunderstanding in communications led to the allied artillery to fire on its own Parachute Battalions, causing many casualties. Les acting independently, was able to order a ceasefire, which saved many lives. It was for this action that he was awarded a mention in despatches, which was confirmed in the London Gazette on the 8th of November 1945.


Les returned to the UK in September 1944, returning to mainland Europe in December 1944 for the Ardennes campaign. He also took part in the last major Airborne Operation "Operation Varsity" in March 1945. He was promoted to Bombardier in May 1945 and was involved with operations in Palestine in charge of motor transport for 212 Battery. He was discharged into the Army Reserve in 1947 on his return to the UK.


Leslie married his wife Phyllis, who he had met at RAF Ringway, while she was a parachute packer, during his parachute training course. They had two children, David and Linda, five grand children and five great grand children. Les went on to own several news agent shops and continued working until 1996.


Leslie Allsopp's funeral was held at All Hallows Church at Gedling in Nottingham on Thursday, February the 14th at 11:45 AM.


The guard of honour was given by members of the Parachute Regimental Association, Nottingham Branch, and the secretary of Leicester Branch. Members from Branches of the Royal British Legion and the Sherwood Yeomanry also made up the guard of honour.

Mark Holding (Treasurer)

Thursday 14th February 2013


Image description
Image description

Above: Bombadier Leslie Allsopp

Eric Kibble

(Nottingham Branch)


1923 – January 2013


6th Battalion (Royal Welch)

The Parachute Regiment


'A' Company, 8 Platoon.



Eric Kibble was born in Birmingham in 1923. He joined the Army and volunteered for the Parachute Regiment, where he served with the 6th Parachute Battalion which had a strong welsh contingent.


On the 9th of September 1943, Eric and his battalion arrived in Taranto Harbour, Italy, on HMS Abdeil. The ship hit a sea mine and broke in half. The ship sank within five minutes with the loss of many lives. Eric and his platoon were lucky to survive.


Eric's Battalion moved North from Taranto by train, to various locations near Orsogna, an area where he and his platoon would spend a lot of time over the next few months. They not only had to deal with the enemy, but also the snow blizzards that came on New years day.


On February 1st 1944, Eric was seriously wounded after the Barn that his section had sheltered in, came under heavy enemy mortar fire. Eric suffered severe head injuries and crushed vertebra. He was medically evacuated back to the UK and would suffer with these injuries for the rest of his life.


Eric moved to Beeston, Nottingham, after the War, and worked for 30 years at Ericsson’s. Eric didn't let his disabilities get in his way, even though he was partially paralysed on the left hand side. Eric was a keen gardener. He married his wife Ida, who died in November 2011, after 64 years of marriage. Eric was very proud to hear that his Grandson, Steven, was joining the Grenadier Guards, and even more proud when he was able to see him on television guarding the Queen and preparing for deployment to Afghanistan.


Eric was a long standing member of the Nottingham Branch of the Parachute Regimental Association, although he had been unable to attend Branch meetings in recent years, due to ill health.


Eric was cremated at Bramcote Crematorium on February 5th 2013. Eight members of the Nottingham Branch of the Parachute Regimental Association attended Eric's funeral service, including the Branch Standard, to give Eric an honour guard.

The Branch would like to pass on its deepest sympathy to Eric's family and friends.


Mark Holding (Treasurer)

Tuesday 5th February 2013


Image description



(2 PARA)

3rd Augaust 1926 - 13th January 2013

Stanley Ortzen Abbott was born and raised in Baseford, Nottingham. He worked at Ericssons and John Players, before joining the Parachute Regiment towards the end of WW2. This was after hearing that the Paras were paid 2/6p extra per week. Stan completed his Airborne training at Hardwick Hall in Derbyshire, and would meet his future wife Eileen, just before deployment to Palestine. He would spend the following two years on Palestine operations. On his return from Palestine and demobilization from the Parachute Regiment,  Stan married Eileen and returned to the John Players factory, before his final job with British Telecom. He would spend the next 40 years with British Telecom. Eileen and Stan were married for 63 years. Stan's cremation and service was held at Bramcote Crematorium on the 28th of January 2013. Stan leaves his wife, Eileen, Daughter Julie and her partner Geoff. He also leaves two Grand Sons and Five Grand children and his Brother Dennis.


Stan's funeral was attended by five members of the Nottingham Branch of the Parachute Regiment, including the Branch Standard.



Mark Holding (Treasurer)

28th January 2013

Image description

ABOVE RIGHT: Stanley Abbott with wife Eileen

BELOW: Stan's original Old Comrades Association card, which pre dated the Parachute Regimental Association of today.

Image description
Image description


(Nottingham Branch)

Image description
Image description

Ken Duggan 3 PARA - 22 S.A.S


Army number: 23249873


Rank: Cpl


Service: 3 PARA - 22 S.A.S 'B' Squadron





Ken Duggan died at 2:30 AM on May the 2nd 2012 after suffering heart problems and leukaemia.

Ken was a great character within the Nottingham branch of the Parachute Regimental Association. He was quick witted, with a great sense of humour, and everyone that came to know him will miss him for the man he was.


Ken's funeral was held on Wednesday the 16th of May at 12:30 PM at the Bramcote Crematorium. As well as Ken's immediate family and friends, many members of the Parachute Regimental Association and Special Air Service Regimental Association, including a serving officer from 22 S.A.S came to pay their respects for one of their Airborne Brothers. Members from the Royal British Legion were also well represented. The fact that more than 30 people had to watch the service from the viewing room because they couldn't all fit in the 120 capacity chapel showed how much Ken meant to everyone.


Ken served with the Parachute Regiments 3rd Battalion during the 1950s and was a very proud member of the El Gamal Club. (Members of the 3rd Battalion that jumped onto El Gamal Airfield during the Suez crisis on Operation Musketeer). This was to be the battalions first and last operational parachute assault since WW2. Ken jumped onto El Gamal at 05:15 hrs. GTM on the 5th of November 1956 with the rest of the battalion, and despite vigorous defensive fire, El Gamal Airfield was captured within 30 minutes. The battalion then fought their way through a sewage farm and cemetery as they rolled up the coastal defences. The following day the battalion provided covering fire for the amphibious landings, where they would link up with 45 Commando.


After Ken's time with 3 PARA he went on to do selection and served with 'B' Squadron 22 S.A.S. Ken's brother also served with him during his time with this Regiment. Here Ken would see more active service in Malaya and the Middle East.


Ken was a very proud member of both the Parachute Regiment and the Special Air Service Regiment. He epitomized the spirit of a true Airborne Warrior, who as well as being tough, had a great sense of humour. We will all miss him for the man he was. I will especially miss his banter at the Nottingham Branch meetings between 3 PARA and 2 PARA. Our condolences go out to Ken's family and friends.




Mark Holding (Treasurer)

Image description
Image description


(Nottingham Branch)

14990815 Pte Frank Love 13 Para and 2 Para:


Frank joined the military 1n 1943 and was immediately enlisted into the Royal Navy, with the Service number of PJX678003. Later he was transferred to the Army and enlisted into 13th Battallion The Parachute Regiment. The Battalion had been formed in 1943 until 1945 when it was disbanded. Frank served, under SEAC in Java, during the troubles there, until the battalion was disbanded when he transferred to the 2nd Battalion in Palestine. He served with 2 Para until he was demobbed in 1947 and he returned to England.


I don't know what Frank did on his return to civvy street but he eventually joined the Nottingham Branch of the Parachute Regiment Association and was a member for many years. Frank has been ill for a couple of years and he finally succumbed to his illness on Tuesday 22nd February 2011.


Frank's Funeral Service is to be held at St Michael's Church, Bramcote Village, on Tuesday 8th March at 12:30pm and then there is to be a short Service at the Bramcote Crematorium for family and friends. Members of the PRA are invited and the family have requested the Branch Standard, that Frank was proud to have served under, to be on parade. It is to be carried by Ken Sellars a family friend.


Friends are also invited, by Denny and the family, to partake of afternoon tea in the church hall following the Service. The family have asked that only they display flowers on the day. Others are asked to donate to The "Parachute Regimental Charity-Memorial Fund" if agreeable.



Image description
Image description


(22 SAS)

Although John McAleese was not a member of the Nottingham Branch I thought it fitting that such an Icon from the Special Forces Community should get a mention.

Mark Holding (Treasurer)

John McAleese 22 S.A.S

I have just heard the sad news through the Special Forces Charity "Pilgrim Bandits" that John McAleese MM has died while on holiday. This is conformed by Regents Park Barracks. John a former member of 22 S.A.S Regiment was in one of the S.A.S assault teams who's job was to rescue hostages from the Iranian Embassy. It was John's team that blew the windows in on the embassy balcony in 1980, and the whole World was watching. He was one of the icons for the Regiment, who up until that time were in general an unknown force in the eyes of the public. John's Son, Paul McAleese, a Sergeant with the 2nd Battalion the Rifles was killed in action while going to the aid of a wounded comrade in Afghanistan in 2009. Paul's Son, Charley was born just two weeks before his deployment in April, Paul's loss devastated the whole family.
After leaving service, John controversially went on to write books on the Regiment and appear in Documentary's about the S.A.S, which along with other former S.A.S members led to the Confidentiality Disclosure Act coming into force in the 1990s, banning all serving members of the Special Forces community from following suit and writing books or disclosing operational procedures. Even so. John McAleese stands as a highly respected Special Forces soldier within the Special Forces community and one of it's most respected operatives. It's people like John McAleese that have come to the rescue of this Country time and time again, and the Regiment will carry on such work in the future, in most cases we won't even know what sacrifices are being made by such men in the name of our Country.
R.I.P John McAleese MM.

By Mark Holding


Image description

John and team member about to place the charge on the Iranian Embassy window.


Image description

John McAleese MM