Created: 09/09/01. Updated: 09/09/02 @ 12:07 hrs. Copyright   2001-2004 Mike Kemble

Reunion of the 1st Royal Tank Regiment
Scarborough, Yorkshire, England
7-9 September 2001


Saturday morning dawned. Well actually it was 0930 before I rose from the bed!  I hurriedly showered, packed and then checked my bits 'n pieces for the long drive from Sutton Coldfield to Scarborough, it was 180 miles; mostly motorway - thankfully.  I left the house at 1035 and arrived in Scarborough at approx 1345 and drove along the sea front, passing all the holiday makers and the Lord Nelson pub, the venue for the afternoon's meeting. I then spent another hour driving around and around the town seeking out a resting hole for the night.  I eventually found one at the Cristobelle Hotel, Castle Road, Scarborough; booked in, cleaned up and headed for town to meet whoever had turned up at the Lord Nelson, a Kareoke (yuk!) paradise on the sea front. I stopped off to get some haddock 'n chips en route to the pub, eating it as I wandered towards the harbour area.  I arrived at the pub to find quite a few already stopping the bar from falling over and different people helping the wordless songs with their own strange renditions!  Poor old George Eastham - he was oblivious to all as he "sang" his way through a rendition of something or other.  His hand stuck in his belt behind him, thumb twitching like an aerial!  Getting the vibes man!  Sorry if I forget names here as my memory is not so hot these days.  All thanks to that bloody brain virus I got in Ireland. I was greeted by one or two people who immediately recognized me (I wonder how?) and then spotted Alan Walby and his lovely wife parked near the Kareoke noise maker.  We sat and chatted for a while; the usual thing - "Do you remember? etc etc.  I spotted Ian Hatfield, Tony "Dranner" Dransfield, Stevie Matthews;  Ken Parkinson, George Eastham, and then Derek Atherton, who used to be my Chief Clerk and is now a Major in Sussex.  *Bows politely* More below............

  Mrs and Eddie Atkinson

Jeff Lyman chatting to ???

Dan Fallon with Eddie Atkinson

Don Crassweller with Bert French

Eddie Atkinson with Barnie Barnes and Dave Clarkson in background

Ken Parkinson talks to Jeff Lyman

Loads of other ex tankies weaved across my vision, many faces too readily remembered but, unfortunately, not names.  Craig Dutton was also stopping the bar from leaning too far.  I then found the reason we were all there and the genius behind the whole idea in the first place - Paul Ramsay.  Here and now let me thank Paul for his monumental efforts in getting this off the ground, 10 years ago, so I have been told.  I only found out about it about 4 years ago but this was the first time I had been able to attend, I usually hit Cornwall at this time of year, at my sisters.  Many many congratulations Paul - a great, resounding success.

Mrs and Arthur "Abe" Abraham, back to camera Alfie Jessop

Jackie Cooney (she has not changed a bit) and brother Paul Edwards

Names for first 3?? "Cilla" Farrell back to camera, with Mrs Farrell on right 

Derek Atherton, Paul Ramsay and Steve Greaves

Not so "Slim" Herbert alias the Omagh Sheriff, Charlie Elliot, now deceased, and Paddy McCann 

Keith Birch

The afternoon wore on and some began drifting away, to get some rest before the evenings festivities at the Territorial Army Centre.  I wandered over to the large TV screen in the corner to find out how Manchester United were getting on against Everton; we were 3-0 up; 20 minutes to go. Liverpool were losing at home against Aston Villa (he he) and Leeds were being held at home 0-0 by Bolton.  I then spotted another Chief Clerk of mine in Steve Greaves who is also now a Major and working out of Glasgow. *bows politely*.  After watching the football final scores come up (United won 4-1, Liverpool losing 3-1) I left the pub and wandered along the sea front for an hour before heading back to my hotel room for a much needed shower, rest and get changed for the evening "do".  Car parking was a major problem and I got a knock on the door from Tony, the owner of the Cristobelle; asking that I remove my car from another hotel's car park - the woman was getting a bit shirty! Can't for the life of me imagine why!  I ended up parking by Scarborough Castle, about 300 yards away, and I bloody well left it there!

Derek Sheridan and myself - thanks Derek, for mailing me this.

Ian Hatfield with Dave Ellis 
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Alan Walby and Roly Marshall

 Howard Murray, Mick Bird, Andy Prior

Mrs Eddie, Eddie etc etc

Ben gets his ears chewed by Alan and who is in that shirt! 

I went around to Paul's Hotel to meet him, as arranged, at 1915 only to find he had already gone!  Here I was very fortunate to bump into three more "old gits" from 1 RTR.  Ex-RSM Jeff Lyman - now an Officer; didn't ask him what rank and "Paddy" McCann who was my SQMS in Command and Support Squadron way way back in Osnabruck in '72.  He reminded me of the days when I used to do loads of baby sitting for him.  He also reminded me of a large golden Teddy Bear I had bought his little daughter for Christmas - with the added note that she still had it - 29 years on!  The next person I met was the person responsible for allowing me on the road on 4 wheels! - Don Crassweller - my driving instructor in Omagh; who taught me to drive in a Land Rover. He had a unique method of making sure that the lesson's taught sank in - an 18 inch plastic ruler!  It bloody well worked as well Don!  We trooped out and installed ourselves in a taxi for the TA Centre.  We were joined by another in the taxi, but can I remember his name?

Tommy Cormack, Harry Robinson, Rat Reed

Ian Hatfield again with Joe Gotobed

Dan Fallon, Mick "You got a 1033 for that?" Bird and Dave Clarkson

Paul: "So Kewell slipped the ball round Barthez..."
 Andy: "A miracle!"

Howard Murray etc etc

Steve Greaves gives a rendition of the Star Spangled Banner, whilst (?) gags and Ben can't stop laughing!

When we got to the TA Centre, this anonymous gent even paid the taxi - some memory eh?  I entered the building to find Steve Matthews sitting at a table trying to make sense out a hand scribbled list of names, drawn up by Paul Ramsay, and trying to sort out who had paid and who had not; myself being in the latter.  Then others began to arrive, too many for me to remember at this stage.  Straight ahead was the disco area, but I went upstairs to one of the bars and found several already there - photo's were taken.  If you know names under otherwise blank photo's, mail me with the names etc and I will insert them?
Derek Atherton had rejoined us, Ian Hatfield arrived as did Eddie Atkinson, Dan and Gloria Fallon, Ben Campbell, Mick Bird (& the missus!), Tommy Cormack, "Roly" Marshall, "Cilla" Farrell, Joe Gotobed, Barry Hoare, Denise Lumsden, Arthur Abraham, "Slim" Herbert, Dave Clarkson, Roddy Hine and another officer whose bloody name is also hidden in the mists. Jeff Lyman was there and Bert French. Derek Sheridan was graced with a photo of the two of us on the front steps and Tony Dransfield let me use his mobile to ring his wife Connie!  The Carling Lager was now taking a hold on my remaining brain cells and I spoke to many many people all night long.  Mac (REME) told me he had found this domain by accident when looking for 1 RTR and found it brilliant (his words honest!). Alan and Chris Walby, were there as was "Nobby" Noble; who chewed my ear about a mutual "friend" - also from Leeds - who should apologise to Nobby quick!! Say no more!

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Ollie Cole, Carl Cole and Steve Read
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Me, Dan Fallon and Eddie Atkinson
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Dan Fallon, Eddie Atkinson, Mrs Atkinson and Mrs Fallon
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Tony Twigger (4 RTR) Leo Sayer (The Bish) and Ian Chamberlain - after sailing around GB! 2001.
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Ian Chamberlain (right)
Sent to me 01/01/02 by Iain Thompson

By the time I had had enough, it was about 0030 and my head hurt like thunder!  I looked for Paul Ramsay to say goodnight, a heartfelt thanks and hopefully see you next year. But he was nowhere to be found. I got back to my hotel at about 0100 and staggered up a multitude of stairs to the lofty heights of my room; from which could be seen the entire Scarborough seafront, most of the town, and all downwards!

I settled into bed, nursing a head and a half and somehow drifted off to be woken several times during the night by seagulls screeching outside, just above my window!  Closed the window and back to sleep!  Someone, at sometime in the very early hours, decided to knock on my room door. By the time I had struggled up from the depths of deep sleep all I heard was a male (damn!) voice saying, "it must be empty" - then silence until my phone alarm kicked in at 0815 - Time for breakfast!  After eating a full cooked breakfast, three cups of tea, two glasses of orange juice and three rounds of toast (I wasn't really hungry!) I sorted my stuff out and left the hotel at 0940 - to head for the North Yorkshire Steam Railway at Pickering on my way home. I spotted Ben Campbell walking along the seafront - so I paused and asked him to say goodbye to Paul for me.

That's it for now folks. Hope you enjoy the latest photo's. Anyone not mentioned on these is due to my bad memory. Mail me here if you want anybody anotated - or less painfully, just a note underneath with their name(s). If any of you have photo's to add, please email them to me and I'll put them in. Toodle Pip - hope to catch you all again soon!

Thanks to Eddy Atkinson for some photos, and Derek Sheridan too. All Contact information is on, naturally enough, the Contacts Page linked below.

23 July 2002. Spoke to Paul Ramsay last night and heard some sad news. Apparently "Mac" McCartney has passed away, as has Charlie Elliott; Hoppy Hopkinson and Snowy Evans.  Diff news: Jim Steele has been sighted alive and well in Leeds. I have booked into the Cristobel with my wife Sue for the weekend.