Talk by chairman of the Britain-Nepal Society

THE Tank Ting Twinning Association (TTTA) is kicking off a year of community events this month by welcoming Ickleton resident, Lt Col (Retd) Gerry Birch, to their Friends of Tang Ting evening on Wednesday (March 16) at Carver Barracks Village Hall.

Lt Col Birch was Military Attach� at the British Embassy in Kathmandu between 1989 and 1992. He will be talking about his career and experiences as Royal Signals officer in the 1960’s with the Gurkha signals in Singapore, Malaya, Nepal and Hong Kong.

Nearer to home he served in Germany, Belgium, Netherlands and after promotion to Lt Col he took command of 36 Eastern Signal Regiment covering eastern England from Norwich to Eastbourne.

Lt Col Birch maintains his interest in Nepal and the Gurkhas.

He said: “I am pleased that this small community is continuing to foster the unique relationship between Nepal and Great Britain that has existed for almost 200 years.”

Lt Col Birch is chairman of the Britain-Nepal Society and editor of their journal. He is a Fellow of the Royal Geographic Society and a member of the Royal Society of Asian Affairs.

The TTTA was initially established as a community project to bring together the communities of Debden, Wimbish and Carver Barracks which form the two wards of Uttlesford District councillor Tina Knight.

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The regular Friends evenings are a way of bringing these communities together alongside the local Nepalese community based at both the barracks and Saffron Walden.

The knock-on benefit of the local community initiative has been to support the poor remote mountain village of Tang Ting in Nepal from which many of the Gurkha community originates.

TTTA president Cllr Knight said: “We are delighted that Lt Col Birch will be speaking to us about his experiences with the Gurkhas and hope that as many people as possible will come along.”

Doors open at 7.45pm. Admission is free. Further enquiries on: 01799 540881.