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Imphal Barracks


A small number of members met on a fantastic Saturday morning at McArthur Glen Designer Outlet near York. The purpose of this meet wasn’t for retail therapy, oh no. Not because we’d left our credit cards (and wives) at home but so we could all converge together on Imphal Barracks to help the Army celebrate their open to the public day. Arriving at the barracks just after 8.30, we were shown to our very own spot, complete with a large Army tent to keep us from the harmful UVA rays, chairs and table. We were made most welcome and comfortable.

Between us we had dragged along Big Dave with a Lightweight Special Ops, Sean and his 110 Defender and MOBAT, Craig and a Series 2a and trailer, Dennis and his Humber Staff Car and Ian had made the long journey from home (stopping several times to refuel) in an Austin Tilly. Christine from the Yorkshire Air Museum also brought along a Chevrolet.
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The Infantry Barracks, Fulford were built between 1877-1880. It was renamed Imphal Barracks in 1951 as this was considered a most significant battle honour won by the West Yorkshire Regiment in World War Two. In 1944, both regular battalions of the Regiment played a huge part in the vital defense of Imphal Plain, Burma against Japanese attack. The Barracks also houses the Kohima museum.

 Displays and attractions were put on for all visitors including the White Helmets motorcycle display team, parachute display, World War One re-enactment by the Allied Forces Military Control, Northern Command (Britain vs. Germany, we surrendered to avoid extra time and penalties), marching military bands, falconry display, military dog handling and the new Yorkshire regiment put on a tactical display with a Warrior tank (lots of bangs and explosions there then)

Side attractions included paint balling, rotating climbing wall, inflatable assault course, a zip line (death slide we used to call them) that stretched from Imphal to the Humber Bridge with the top of the tower disappearing into the only cloud on a hot, sunny day. Other small challenges included pitch and putt, penalty shoot out, war wounds provided by the Medics, along with modern day military vehicles brought along by various units and some that are based at the Barracks.

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Refreshments were supplied by various snack bars and ice cream vans, along with the biggest beer tent ever and a Taste of Everest, fantastic home made curry and traditional food made by the 246 Ghurkha Sig Sqn (the White Helmets weren’t the only ones with a flaming ring of fire). The day drew to a close at 1700hrs and a great day was had by all. The weather was perfect (except for visitors from Ghana who were feeling the cold), the displays were brilliant and the organisation was exceptional.
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