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  • 1 million Germans are victims of phone scams

    Telephone scams often begin with a call from a young person claiming to be a relative in need of financial helpThe Federal Criminal Police Office (BKA) has warned that phone scams directed against the elderly are becoming more and more popular in Germany. 

    One million Germans have been robbed of €117 million through telephone scams since 2008, the BKA reports.

    Recently there has been a surge of ‘grandchild ploys’ targeting old people who live by themselves.

    They will receive a telephone call from a young person saying “Hey grandma, it’s me!” and go on to convince their victim that they are a close relative in need of urgent financial help.

    Although this type of fraudulent call has been claiming victims for a long time, it is still very successful.

  • Germany News in Brief - June 30, 2016

    Ex-Auschwitz guard convicted

    DETMOLD – A 94-year-old former Auschwitz guard has been sentenced to jail by a judge who branded him a “willing and efficient henchman” in the Holocaust.

    Reinhold Hanning, from Detmold, was convicted of being an accessory to the murder of at least 170,000 people at the concentration camp in Nazi-occupied Poland.

    Hanning’s lawyer, Johannes Salmen, said they would appeal. “I assume he will not be fit for a custodial sentence. That means he will not have to go to jail.”

    Besides Hanning, one other man and one woman in their 90s are accused of being accessories to the mass murder at Auschwitz. 

    A third man who was a member of the Nazi SS guard team at Auschwitz died at the age of 93 in April, days before his trial was due to start.

  • GOC touches base with 20X

    The GOC is met by 5 RIFLES buglers and an Honour GuardThe GOC 3rd (UK) Div, Maj Gen Patrick Sanders, recently made a two-day trip to visit HQ 20 Armoured Infantry Brigade and its units and also also took the opportunity to call in to HQ BFG. 

    Gen Sanders commanded 20th Armoured Brigade in 2009–2012 and then Afghanistan as Task Force Helmand 2011–2012 and said he was delighted to be back in Germany.

    The GOC is briefed at the Goldrun training area on 1 AMR’s preparation for its role in Prairie Storm 3 later this yearDuring his stay he received briefings from both Comd 20 AI Bde, Brig Ian Mortimer and Comd BFG, Brig Ian Bell on subjects involving the training preparations for NATO’s Very High Readiness Joint Task Force (VJTF), the role of which 20 AI Bde assume in January next year. Also discussed was rebasing, including 5 RIFLES’ impending move from Paderborn back to the Bulford area.

  • News UK cease supply of daily newspapers to BFG

    Due to the high transport costs from their printers in Belgium, News UK will cease their supply of daily newspapers to BFG.

    NAAFI’s Head of Operations, John Goddard, said: “We are disappointed that News UK has taken this course of action but it is not a surprise to us. Unfortunately, despite an initial increase in the number of newspapers sold, this quickly reduced and the numbers are not sufficient to make it economically viable for News UK to continue supplying to BFG.”

    John added: “We have been informed by News UK that the last edition will be delivered on 10th July and following that NAAFI will no longer sell daily newspapers in BFG; we have exhausted all possible supply options”.

    The Sun is available free on-line and The Times/Sunday Times digital version is available from £1 per week for an introductory period of 12 weeks.

  • Keeping your child safe from drowning

    Water safety for childrenYoung children can be fascinated by water, and swimming is great for a child’s health and fitness. 

    Here are some tips to make sure that their time in the water is fun and safe.  

    Did you know?

    Babies and toddlers drown silently and can drown in as little as 5cm of water. Even rainwater collecting in a bucket can be a danger for a small child.

    Most drownings involving two to three-year-olds happen in the home and garden.

    A wind blowing off the land makes the sea look flat and calm but it can sweep airbeds or inflatable toys out to sea dangerously quickly.

    Young children can also drown in swimming pools. In the last six years, 30 children under 10 have drowned in a hotel or villa pool abroad. This usually happens when they wander away from their parents and fall into the pool.

  • Biking for Blesma

    Bike for BlesmaThere was a great response for the Bike Ride-out in aid of Blesma which took place on May 1.

    Forty-seven bikers rode from Bielefeld NAAFI to Sennelager NAAFI Max and raised €667 for the charity which helps limbless veterans lead independent and fulfilling lives.

    The money came from riders’ donations and via Justgiving. 

    The ride-out was organised by Kev Teesdale of the Dog Section, Catterick Barracks in Bielefeld, and Stu White. 

    Netty at BlesmaAnnette Teesdale was in charge of administration and the safety car on the day.

    A great day was had by all with fantastic weather and great new friendships being made along the way.

  • Moving moment

    King’s School Prime Minister Adam Fedden, read aloud his own poem at the class of 2016 NRA ceremonyKing’s School said  final goodbye and good luck to its Year 11 students once again in their annual National Record of Achievement (NRA) ceremony on Friday June 10.

    At the end of a fantastic event, school Prime Minister Adam Fedden, read aloud his own poem to the audience of students, parents, teachers and colleagues from DCYP, reducing many to tears with his warm words. 

  • AFF e-news bulletins

    Aff

  • Friendly Flocke: Euro 2016’s top-tipster

    Flocke the penguinWith most of the continent caught up in Euro 2016 fever and some rank outsiders going through to the next round, one unusual fan is tipping the correct winners again and again.

    Flocke – a penguin at the Spreewelten baths in Lübbenau, Brandenburg – is making his name as a psychic after a streak of correct football predictions.

    With the group stages now concluded, it’s still early days at this year’s UEFA Euro 2016 football tournament, but not all the excitement is on the pitch.

    In addition to spending a lot of his time swimming with his family, Flocke also makes football predictions.

  • Telekom warns users to change passwords after scam

    Telekom warningDeutsche Telekom is warning customers to change their passwords after finding that up to 120,000 customers’ data was being sold on the black market.

    Telekom stated in an announcement on Monday that customers should immediately change their passwords after finding evidence that the account information for between 64,000 and 120,000 customers was being sold on the black market.

    Specifically, the T-Online email addresses and passwords that customers use to log in to their accounts online were being sold by dozens of companies in the “darknet” and the data was “at least partially real and current”, according to the company.

  • Sapper 300

    Sapper 300

  • Home-Start Meet and Greet

    Home–Start Bielefeld invites everyone to a Meet and Greet coffee morning on Thursday, July 7, Block 26C, Catterick Barracks, from 10am to 11am.

  • German-British Society Bielefeld

    German-British Society Bielefeld

  • Bielefeld Summer Fete – Update

    Bielefeld Summer Fete

  • Rietberg Park Trip

    Rietberg

  • Bad Lippspringe Coffee Club

    Coffee Club

  • ASD Parent Support Group

    ASD

  • Farewell Coffee Morning – Mansergh Library

    Coffee morning

  • Last Car Boot Sale – NAAFI Max Gütersloh

    Car Boot Sale

  • Two-Minute Silence to commemorate Somme 100 – 0828 hrs Friday, July 1

    The 100th anniversary of the beginning of the Battle of the Somme is on Friday, July 1.

    The Battle of the Somme (film image)

    To mark this anniversary the Prime Minister has agreed that a two-minute national silence is to be held at 0728 hrs (UK local time) / 8.28 hrs (Germany). 0730 hrs (0830 hrs) marks 'zero hour', the moment that the battle began 100 years ago.

  • High praise indeed

    Commander BFG, Brig Ian Bell, present a Commander BFG Commendation to Dr Peter WalkerCommander BFG Commendations are awarded to Service personnel and civilians who have demonstrated a high level of excellence, effort, committed service or devotion to duty over and above the norm. 

    Dr Peter Walker was awarded the Commander BFG Commendation by Commander BFG, Brig Ian Bell, in recognition of his outstanding 26 years of service to the BFG community. 

    The award was presented at Headquarters British Forces Germany Health Service (BFGHS) in Catterick Barracks, Bielefeld.  

  • Loggies march off

    The rain held off – members of 6 Regiment RLC parade on the former airfield at Princess Royal Barracks, GüterslohThe last British Army unit to be based at Princess Royal Barracks proudly paraded for the final time at the Gütersloh camp on June 17, ahead of its move back to the UK this summer.

    Around 200 soldiers from 6 Regiment RLC celebrated the milestone in BFG’s history with a farewell parade at the former military airfield in front of Commander BFG, Brig Ian Bell, and a host of invited guests.

    It was the last major event at the once bustling barracks, which has been under British Armed Forces control for 71 years and is due to be handed back to the German authorities this autumn.

    The logistics unit, which has been stationed at the sprawling estate on Marienfelder Strasse since 1993, was presented with the prestigious Fahnenband (ribbon of honour) by a German army officer –  the highest honour that can be bestowed by the Federal Government of Germany on a NATO force.

  • Namasté 6 Regt

    In a slightly different PT session from what 6 Regiment the Royal Logistic Corps are used to, more than 150 soldiers met at the PRB astro turf for their first ever yoga session before their final parade, which took place last Friday.

    Soldiers of 6 Regiment RLC stretch out
    In the final PT session to take place in BFG for 6 Regt RLC, before moving back to the UK, it was important for the CO, Lt Col Crossland, to have a bit of fun.

  • Cinelink film club in Bielefeld Station

    He got the firm base project rolling – Lt Col (retd) Bob McKeegan-Brown opens Bielefeld Station’s community room, Bob’s Den, which is named in his honour, as eager children line up to see Zootopia at the Cinelink film club A row of small, smiling faces greeted Lt Col (retd) Bob McKeegan-Brown on June 5 when he officially opened Bielefeld Station’s multifunctional community room, which includes a film club on Sundays.

    Dozens of children, accompanied by adults, arrived at Bob’s Den in Catterick Barracks to see a matinee screening of computer animation Zootopia, while in the evening, thriller Eye in the Sky entertained the grown-ups.

    The new facility – further evidence of the Army’s firm base concept – is used by volunteer groups during the week, but every Sunday the Cinelink film club takes over the former band room near the NAAFI Express shop. And it is run completely by volunteers.

  • The Princess Bride - at the Sparrenburg

    Bielefeld University’s English Drama Group, ready to perform The Princess Bride at the Sparrenburg Castle, Bielefeld later this monthTo celebrate their 40th anniversary, Bielefeld University’s English Drama Group is proudly presenting a stage adaptation of The Princess Bride.

    Produced by Bernhard Eickenberg and Antje Hey, the performances will take place on Wednesday, June 29, Thursday, June 30, Friday, July 1, and Monday, July 4 at 7.30pm in the inner courtyard of Sparrenburg Castle in Bielefeld.

    The performances will be in English and admission is free.

    The production is based on The Princess Bride, a 1973 fantasy romance novel written by William Goldman. The book combines elements of comedy, adventure, fantasy, romance and fairy tale.

  • Pilgrimage along the Western Front

    Historian Sir Anthony SeldonAvid trekkers are being invited to join a leading historian walking the length of the 1916 Western Front starting on June 22.

    Author Sir Anthony Seldon will lead a team of four and hopes that the Via Sacra Walk will become a permanent event. They are also encouraging the public to do a leg with them, joining famous people such as actors Elizabeth Hurley and Dominic West.

    Inspired by a letter from a soldier in the First World War, Sir Anthony Seldon will lead the walk across the Western Front, as it was in 1916, from Switzerland to the English Channel – a total of 450 miles – a  frontline that once occupied the attention of the world. 

    The walk will coincide with the 100th anniversary of the battles of the Somme and Verdun and is in homage to soldier Alexandar Douglas Gillespie and to the millions of soldiers who lost their lives between 1914 and 1918.

  • Fishing for success

    Group 9 Army Carpers Germany recently took part in their third qualifying event to determine which anglers will go forward to compete in the Army Angling Championships, which are scheduled to take place later this year in Walthamstow, England. 

    Tpr Daeglen Cooper proudly presents his personal best
    The first and second qualifying events took place in France and Germany respectively, with the most recent taking place in Etang Rue, Belgium between May 26-29. There are a further three scheduled to take place prior to the Army Angling Championships.

  • Poppy Summer Ball

  • Fixing music time machines

    Markus Wiessing with a 1965 Seeburg Discothequès, which is up for sale for €2,000Nostalgic Markus Wiessing is a jukebox hero to collectors of 45rpm vinyl records.

    The 54-year-old has a passion for the music of the 1950s and 1960s and spends his spare time restoring classic jukeboxes from those decades to their former glory.

    But he has a penchant for the Seeburg brand, which he considers to be the “Rolls Royce of jukeboxes.”

  • 26 RA Bowled over by kings

    On a lovely late Spring day, King’s Staff First XI played 26th Regiment Royal Artillery (26 Regt RA) in the now annual cricket match on the back field at King’s.

    King’s Staff First XI bowled 26 RA out for 98
    With the hay bales behind the pitch, the scene was reminiscent of Mr Cave’s Norfolk cricket days.

  • That’s just not Cricket!

    No amount of torrential rain could stop the cricketers of the BA(G) Inter Unit Limited Overs Cricket Championship held last week at Barker Barracks, Paderborn.

    Winners: 4 SCOTS
    The six units that entered the competition were probably expecting more summery weather but got quite the opposite. Nonetheless a great competition saw some excellent cricket at the crease.

  • Sport Alive in Germany

    Leaving it to the final race of the day, The Queen’s Royal Hussars (QRH) claimed this year’s Inter-unit Athletic Championship title.

    All competitors make it safely over the first hurdleTen teams battled it out in a mix of track and field events with a brilliant competitive atmosphere throughout the day.

  • SSAFA’s Great British Summer Fete Saturday, June 4

    Having a wristband is your key to being able to win one of the amazing prizes on offer in the prize draw at the SSAFA Summer FeteA spectacular day in Sennelager has been organised for this Saturday (June 4) by SSAFA Paderborn Committee for the communities that have been so supportive over the last year.

    By organising sponsorship and donations from across Paderborn and the UK, the team has ensured that there is some give back to those who supported SSAFA throughout the year.

    At SSAFA's Great British Summer Fete there will be a huge range of activities, events, entertainment and fun to be had by all ages, families, friends and soldiers alike.  

    Entrance is from 11.30am and large amount of parking space will be available. Transport is also available so get in touch with your UWO to find out more details.

  • Ask the commander

    Brig Ian Bell invites BFG community members to share their views via BFGnet online forum

    "Having launched the new-look BFGnet last month (May), I hope that many of you will have had the opportunity to look around the site.

    I wanted to draw your attention to one important new function listed under the Top Tasks on BFGnet.

    As Commander of British Forces in Germany, I am committed to delivering essential services to the community, the rebasing of UK personnel to the UK and drawing down the estate.

    Engaging with you, the community, is crucial. Successful communication needs to be a two-way activity and I want to hear your views.

    That’s why I have launched an Ask the Commander online forum.  I want to provide you the opportunity to provide feedback on life in BFG, ask questions and suggest how we can do things better.

  • Fête Accompli

    Jemima Jane Easton cheers The Crossed Swords  Pipe Band as they play on the lawnFrom hook-a-duck to tombolas, the traditional summer fête is a staple of British summer time and on Saturday, June 13, Catterick Barracks in Bielefeld pulled out all the stops to celebrate the Queen’s official birthday with a ‘fête accompli’.

    The early showers gave way to a beautiful sunny afternoon as the Crossed Swords Pipe Band skirled to the stage. 

  • Stars come out for sci-fi show

  • HIVE’s Big Adventure

    Pad-WSBOn June 15, 16 soldiers from across Paderborn Station braved a chilly Monday morning to partake in a waterskiing session. 

    The event was organised by the Sennelager HIVE, with support from Paderborn Station and funding from the Paderborn welfare fund. 

    This was in conjunction with the Big Adventure Guide, aimed at supporting and promoting activities for single soldiers. 

  • Commander moves on

    Farewell to Westfalen Garrison Commander, Col David Kelly

    Colonel Kelly (right) hands over command to Colonel ConnellyColonel David Kelly officially handed over command of Westfalen Garrison to Colonel John Connelly on Monday, June 15.

    Colonel Kelly arrived as the Deputy Commander of 20th Armoured Brigade and Westfalen Garrison in November 2013, later transitioning to Commander Paderborn Garrison in November 2013.

    On April 1, 2014 he became the first ever Commander Westfalen Garrison, as Paderborn and Gütersloh Garrisons united.

    On his final day, both military and civilian personnel from HQ Westfalen Garrison, HQ 20th Armoured Infantry Brigade and Paderborn Station gathered to bid him bon voyage.

  • Team Herford’s last spin

    A huge thank you goes to everyone for their help and support in this year’s Sp1n for Life event held in Herford on June 13 which raised funds for Cancer Research UK.

    Through a fantastic effort Team Herford amassed a brilliant £592.97 (€827.95) for the charity. Together with spinning teams around the world, the combined total raised looks to be nearing £10,000. 

    The super spinning spouses of Herford Station raised over €800 for Cancer Research UK at this year’s Sp1n for Life event on June 13The organiser would especially like to thank all those who took part and those who raised funds on their own. 

  • Station support for Nepal

    Lt Col Stuart Whittley, CO 16th Signal Regiment and Station Commander of Elmpt Station, congratulates WO1 Yakchha Limbu and teamThree consecutive earthquakes and multiple aftershocks; each time they thought it was over. And then another earthquake shocked the people of Nepal, leaving them absolutely devastated.

    As a result of the terrible devastation wrought over the country, Elmpt Station Warrant Officer WO1 Yakchha Limbu, together with a willing team of helpers, has been very busy organising collections for the Nepal earthquake fund. 

  • Tigresses' Summer of Love Party

    SummerOfLove

  • Education Support Fund

    Service parents, both regular and Reserve Forces, are encouraged to bring the MoD Education Support Fund to the attention of their child’s school. 

    The Education Support Fund (ESF) is now inviting applications from UK publicly funded schools, Local Authorities, state schools, academies, free schools and Sixth Form colleges that cater for the education of Service children. 

  • Zumba – Bielefeld

    Get fit and have fun with Zumba

  • Car Boot Sale – Bielefeld

    CAR BOOT SALE – In aid of Cyprus Rescue Dogs

    Bielefeld NAAFI Car Park

    Saturday, July 4, 10am–2pm

    €10 per pitch payable on the day. Set up from 9am.

    Call Louise Grant, tel: 0521 38492302 or Ian Burden, tel: 05204 9275213 for details.

  • Grand reopening of Mansergh Library

    The grand reopening of Mansergh Library, located opposite the post office in RHQ, will take place on Tuesday, June 30 at 10am.

    There will be free tea, coffee and cake on the day, as well as crafts and colouring-in for the children, plus a raffle for any-one who joins the library on the day, with lots of prizes to be won.

    For more information, contact the library team of Lynsey, Ina and Miriam on 05241 842958 or Mil: 94873 2958.

  • School Bus Registration Week - UPDATE

    Please note the amended poster and details in regards to the school bus registration in Paderborn Station.

    BusregNEWRegistration can be undertaken in person during the Registration Week (which runs until tomorrow, June 26) or forms can be printed out, completed, signed and submitted to either a bus escort or the bus escort supervisor. Forms should be submitted either this week or at the bus escort supervisor’s office no later than July 3.

    Forms are available on http://bfgnet.de/news/paderborn, either as a Word document or a pdf (click on the link).

    Failure to submit a form may result in insufficient allocated space on the bus for your child, so please either attend one of the registration days or submit your forms no later than July 3.

  • 35 Engr Regt car boot sale

    The 35 Engr Regt Car Boot Sale will take place this Saturday, June 27, from 1.30pm to 6pm, on Barker Barracks.

    To book a pitch (€5) call Sgt Whyte on Paderborn Mil 3890.

  • 1 PWRR Families Day - July 1

    All 1 PWRR personnel are welcome to attend the Family Day on July 1, which promises a fun-packed day for all to enjoy.

    Timings:

    11am Lance Corporals Pass Off Parade

    1.30pm Flying Tigers jump in

    2pm Fair opens (bouncy castle, children’s entertainer)

    2pm Salerno Tug of War

    3pm 57-a-side Football

    4pm Barbecue opens, Fijian and Caribbean food stalls open

    7.30pm Live Music – first set

    9.30pm Live Music – second set

  • B# Sharps - Special gig

    BSharpsPopular Anglo-German cover band B Sharps will be playing a special gig to mark the departure of 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards from BFG this summer.

    The evening kicks off at 8pm on Friday, June 26 in the Thune Krug, Thuner Weg 34, Sennelager. Everyone is welcome – the more the merrier. 

    Lead guitarist and SCE teacher Steve Jessop says the “fun loving, entertaining band” creates upbeat music from across the decades and the genres of soul, pop, rock, new wave – so go along for a good night out.

  • Barker's Bingo – Postponed until July 3

    Please note that the Barker's Bingo and Wives’ Club Raffle has been postponed until Friday, July 3. Doors open 7pm. Eyes down 7.30pm. At the Tigers Den, Barker Barracks, Paderborn. Everyone (over 18 years) welcome.

    Contact Sgt Nige Thompson for further information on 0176 47071012

  • Good to the last drop

    Officers and soldiers from 1 Regt RLC, lead by Maj Dave Pickersgill, travelled to California for a two week oversees adventurous training level 3 skydiving expedition.


    Giving a helping handThe group of 24 was composed of a mixture of instructors, experienced skydivers and students. The students Accelerated Free Fall (AFF) course began with ground school conducted at the Rhine Army Parachute Centre, Germany and culminated with the novice skydivers attaining their British Parachute Association ‘A’-Licence at Skydive Lake Elsinore, California. 

    Experienced skydivers worked on formation skydiving, canopy handling skills and gaining further qualifications.

  • Hacker attack on Bundestag network

    A new government computer network has to be built following an attack on the systemA hacker attack on the Bundestag (German parliament) earlier in 2015 means that an entirely new network will have to be built after experts failed to fix the breach. 

    The Federal Office of Information Technology Security (BSI) decided that it could no longer defend against the attack and had to give up, broadcasters NDR and WDR and the Süddeutsche Zeitung reported on Thursday.

    Der Spiegel reported last Wednesday evening that data was still flowing out of the parliament to unknown recipients, and that rebuilding the network using completely new hardware would take months and cost millions.

    MPs are due to debate the parliament’s next steps, including whether to call on Germany’s domestic intelligence service, the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution (Bundesamt für Verfassungsschutz) for help, but some MPs have expressed doubts about allowing the executive-controlled security services access to their computers.

  • Spy chief seeks to bring field officers to heel

    Gerhard Schindler at the BND’s Bad Aibling listening postThe head of Germany’s foreign intelligence service, the Bundesnachrichtendienst (BND), has decided to reorganise the agency to stop a repeat of the US National Security Agency (NSA) spying scandal that has engulfed it this year.

    BND chief Gerhard Schindler told close colleagues that he wanted to bring the 6,500 agents in field offices back under central control, after some of them acquired “a life of their own”, the Süddeutsche Zeitung reported on Monday.

    Schindler plans to hire external advisers to guide his restructuring of the agency and end the “frayed” way key work is done.

  • British citizenship fees for newborn children

    Following representations from HQ BFG G1 Community Support (CS) Branch, a new Armed Forces instruction (DIN 2015DIN01-130) has been published detailing how non-British parents may be reimbursed for the cost of registering their newborn children as British citizens.

    The regulation applies to children born on or after April 1, 2015 to non-British parents serving on accompanied overseas assignments.

    Unfortunately, applications made for children born prior to this date are not eligible for reimbursement. 

  • Biggest boot

    Dempsey Barracks hosts largest ever RBL car boot sale

    Buyers’ market: the turn-out was high and the donations higher at the Royal British Legion Paderborn Branch car boot sale last month which raised a whopping €2,500 for the Poppy AppealThe Royal British Legion Paderborn Branch held its largest car boot sale to date at Dempsey Barracks on May 24.

    An early start was the order of the day with the organisers and car-booters arriving at 6.45am, and both the parade square and main car park were needed in order to accommodate the 140 pitches.

  • First meet of Anglo-German rugby club

    It has been said that bad weather would never put off a true rugby enthusiast, and that was certainly true when the Rugby Union Garrison Club (RUGC) Paderborn held their first training session on May 28.

    Despite the wet and slightly chilly weather, 23 rugby fans turned up at the Bad Lippspringe sports pitches, to be part of the newly formed club.

    RUGC Paderborn was the brainchild of Spr Zak Bredin from 35 Engineer Regiment in Paderborn, who spent many hours, prior to the first training session, getting the necessary interest and permissions to form this Anglo-German rugby club.

  • Phew, what a scorcher!

    Breath-taking: The 80m sprint with hosesThe heat was on when more than 500 firefighters from all over the world descended on Hannover on June 8–13 to compete for the title of Toughest Firefighter Alive, a mixture of athletic contest and mass spectacle.

    Competitors trained for months in preparation for the contest – sometimes referred to as the Firefighters Ironman competition – which saw the entrants carry heavy weights, run up stairs, crawl, run and swing a hammer – all while wearing their heavy and constricting fireproof gear.

  • The sky’s the limit

    Blooming marvellous! Hans-Peter Schiffer proudly shows off his giant sunflower Record-breaker gardener, Hans-Peter Schiffer from Kaarst in North Rhine–Westphalia, has done it again! 

    He has broken his own previous three records for the world’s tallest sunflower, Guinness World Records reports, with his biggest ever bloom that stands 9.17m tall.

    Springing from the ground the towering flower shatters Schiffer’s previous 2013 Guinness world record of 8.75m, according to the organisation. He also broke the record in 2009 and 2012 for the same achievement, but this past year proved to be his best growing season yet.

  • First Germanwings crash victims’ bodies returned

    Students from the Joseph-König-Gymnasium high school in Haltern-am-See watch as hearses carrying the remains of 16 of their fellow students and two teachers who were killed in the Germanwings plane crash in March drive slowly pastThe first bodies from the Germanwings plane that was deliberately crashed in the French Alps were repatriated to Germany last Tuesday.

    A special flight operated by Lufthansa carried the remains of 44 Germans, who were among the 150 onboard when the jet crashed on March 24, en route from Marseille to Düsseldorf.

    A total of 72 Germans had been onboard the doomed Airbus A320, which was heading from Barcelona to Düsseldorf when it crashed in the French Alps.

  • Germany News in Brief - June 18, 2015

    British children at kindergarten

    GÜTERSLOH – A judgment by the Administrative Court Minden has not been passed yet regarding the rights of children of British soldiers to a place at a German kindergarten.

    However, the court suggested that they are entitled. Even though the claim against Stadt Gütersloh was unsuccessful, the judge encouraged the plaintiffs (British military members) to make a new attempt.

    The Administrative Court suspended the proceedings after finding that the British legal advisors had overlooked that only the children can act as plaintiffs, not their parents.  

    The court advised that they re-apply for kindergarten places with Stadt Gütersloh. If the applications were rejected again, they were advised to lodge a new complaint.

    The presiding judge said that the court foresaw a good chance for the success of this case if the correct formal procedures were followed.

  • CAAS: How much will you pay?

    The modern Combined Accommodation Assessment System (CAAS) will create a fairer, simpler and more balanced way of charging for Service accommodation

    A new charging system for Service accommodation will be introduced in less than a year. This July, occupants of UK Service Families Accommodation (SFA) will receive individual letters containing further information about how Combined Accommodation Assessment System (CAAS) will affect them.

    This will include an estimate of what the charging band will be for their SFA when CAAS commences next April and in future years.

  • Tutors wanted at 51 AEC

    Do you have a skill, talent or specialist subject? 51 AEC is looking for new tutors for a range of courses and the timings can be flexible to work around you and your lifestyle. 

    Recreational course tutors are paid an attractive €18.50 an hour and you do not necessarily have to have a teaching qualification.

    For more details call in to see the PCDL Coordinator on Princess Royal Barracks, Gütersloh, or contact the education centre on: Gütersloh Mil (73) 3414 or 05241 84 3414. Email: 51AEC-Group-PCDL@mod.uk

  • Changes at Herford NAAFIs

    Herford Station drawdown is now in full flow with soldiers, civilians and their families preparing for the move and their new lives back in the UK or elsewhere. 

    NAAFI have been part of the drawdown planning from the outset and have worked with the local command, 1 (UK) Div and DIO to ensure that the appropriate services are delivered until the station is closed.

    NAAFI has agreed with the principal of a ‘cliff-edge’ service, which means that the full offer will be maintained until the last person leaves, with the caveat that where efficiencies can be identified and where there is no detriment to the community then changes can be made.

  • Herford Station Library closure

    Herford Library, Hammersmith Barracks, closed its doors on June 3.

    Eleanor Wilkinson and Ruth McIntyre would like to thank all library members and wish them well on their onward journeys.

  • Volunteers needed at Home-Start

    Home-Start are looking for anyone who can give just a few hours of his or her time each week to help make a difference.

    All volunteers receive training and will attend the Level 2 Safeguarding course as well as a Course of Preparation which is fun, informative and relaxing.

    If you are interested please contact Home-Start for more information on 05251 528609.

  • Nepal Earthquake Charity Dinner Night - July 25

    Nepal Earthquake Charity Dinner Night

    Saturday, July 25 – NATO Officers’ Mess, Normandy Barracks

    Open to all ranks and civilians.

    Cost €20.

    Tickets tel: Sennelager Mil 2638 / 4110 / 3851 / 2266.

    Poster

  • Army travel booking survey

    All Army personnel (civilian and military of all ranks and grades) should be aware that the Army Corporate Governance team are conducting a review of travel booking arrangements (business, training and operations) across the Army to ensure that current processes offer value for money.

    A survey has been developed to give personnel an opportunity to provide a view on how well existing arrangements work.

    All Army personnel are encouraged to complete the short survey as any outcomes may impact on travel arrangements at all levels. 

    The survey will be open until June 26 and can be found on DII at: Army Travel Survey Link.

    If you are aware of any personnel without access to DII or who would prefer to complete the survey manually, you can obtain a fax or postal survey from Nicola Kerr, tel: 94393 6251 or 01264 886251.

  • Adult Learners’ Week – June 2015

    The entire staff at 51 Army Education Centre are ditching their computers and swivelling chairs for a day and heading out to mingle with the masses in aid of Adult Learners’ Week (ALW).

    ALW is a national celebration of lifelong learning and 51 AEC will be joining in this year with a Personal Development Fair.

    The idea behind ALW is to promote adult education by helping people get back into education, encouraging people to learn something new or try that one thing they are interested in but have never quite got round to. 

  • Let's play netball

  • Paderborn Station PRI Shop Grand Opening

    Paderborn Station – PRI Shop Grand Opening – Friday, June 19 at 10am – NAAFI Max Sennelager

    Come and join us at our grand opening and enjoy a free tea or coffee and find out what brands will be available in store.

    Find us on Facebook for updates and promotions – search for ‘Paderborn PRI Shop’

  • Paderborn Station school bus registration

    Registration for school bus places can be made in person during registration week, June 22–26, or forms can be printed out (bfgnet.de/files/f2c/c20/a4967/f320/20150514-Registration_Form.pdf) and submitted during registration week or at the bus escort supervisor’s office no later than July 3. (See notice below.)

    Failure to submit a form may result in there being insufficient space on the bus for your child, so be sure to submit your form in good time.

    Bus registration programme

  • General’s Yorkshire Debut

    Maj Gen Giles Hill, GOC of the 1st (UK) Division, escorted the Inspecting Officer, the Lord Mayor of York, Councillor Sonja Crisp, during the saluteThe Army’s most senior officer in the North of England undertook his first official engagement as a major general when he escorted the Lord Mayor of York at the Royal Salute in Museum Gardens, York.

    Maj Gen Giles Hill, appointed GOC of the 1st (UK) Division in April, escorted the Inspecting Officer, the Lord Mayor of York, Councillor Sonja Crisp, during the salute.

    The 21-gun Royal Salute was fired by three 105mm light guns of 93 (Le Cateau) Battery, 5th Regiment Royal Artillery to mark the 62nd anniversary of the Queen’s Coronation on June 2, 1953.

  • 1 PWRR succeed at six-a-side

    The British Army (Germany) Football Sixes always promises to be a great competition and this year was no exception.

    26 RA counter against 1 Regt RLCThere was glorious weather booked for the event and a strong cohort of 24 teams from across BA(G) entered the competition; ten more teams than last year, which was impressive considering the current drawdown of BFG.

    The group stage started in expected competitive fashion and a varying degree of individual skill and team effort witnessed the top two teams from each group reaching the main competition quarter finals.

  • Army boxer jailed for 10 years

    A drunken Army boxer who violently assaulted a comrade in his Fallingbostel quarters before going on the run for almost 12 months has been jailed for a total of 10 years.

    In an unprovoked night-time attack, Hldr Steven O’Neill and another soldier burst into LCpl Robert Banks’ single living accommodation (SLA) block room while he was on duty and alternately punched him in the head, twice breaking his jaw.

    Hldr O’Neill, 24, then went absent without leave (AWL) in April 2014 to avoid a court martial over the January 2013 incident, but was found guilty in absentia of causing grievous bodily harm with intent (section 18 offence) last October.

    An arrest warrant was issued and he was finally arrested on March 20 at a UK boxing tournament in which he was competing.

    At Hldr O’Neill’s sentencing hearing in Sennelager last week, Judge Advocate Emma Peters called his brutal actions “the most repulsive and vicious assault I’ve seen in this court”.

  • Hitler’s secret stash found

    Silvio Stelzer in one of the cellars where the stash was discoveredA well-know restaurateur claims to have found a secret store of cognac and champagne that once belonged to Adolf Hitler.

    Silvio Stelzer found the liquor stored in a deep complex of cellars under the gardens of his restaurant in Saxony.

    He said he had also found ledgers which showed Hitler’s staff had moved the valuable bottles there to protect them from Allied air raids on Berlin.

  • Brits abroad will get to vote in EU referendum

    The 15-year rule, which prevents a million Britons overseas from voting in UK elections, will be scrapped - but they won’t be given a vote on EuropeBritish nationals who have been living abroad for less than 15 years will be allowed to vote in the EU referendum, while EU citizens in the UK will have no say on whether the UK stays in the European Union.

    The Prime Minister, David Cameron made it an electoral pledge to hold a referendum on whether to stay within the EU, a vote that will take place by the end of 2017.

    On May 24, Number 10 announced who would be able to vote in the referendum, and eligibility will be roughly the same as in a UK general election.

    This means British nationals who have been living abroad for less than 15 years will have their say on whether or not the UK remains in the European Union.

  • More international bus services

    MeinFernbus/Flixbus is expanding to offer more destinations from Germany to the rest of EuropeFollowing a merger, Germany’s largest long-distance bus company MeinFernbus/Flixbus has accelerated its expansion throughout Europe. The network will grow to feature around 60-70 international connections.

    Added to the schedule in the coming weeks will be Sweden, Denmark, the Netherlands, Belgium, France and Italy.

    For the first time the company will offer completely foreign connections, initially between Amsterdam, Brussels and Paris. 

  • Welfare bill grows 50% in a decade

    A study conducted by the Bertelsmann Institute shows that in 2014 local governments spent €78 billion on welfare payments, half as much again as a decade earlier.

    Despite the strength of the German economy and dropping unemployment, local governments are facing an ever increasing bill for social services. In the last decade costs have gone up 50 per cent nationwide, the study found.

    The report also flags up the substantial differences that exist between the different regions. For example, while Wolfsburg in Lower Saxony allocates 17 per cent of its budget to welfare payments, Flensburg in Schleswig Holstein pays 58 per cent of its state budget in welfare.

    The highest proportion of welfare budgets (€36 million) went into child support with spending on daycare for children doubling between 2006 and 2013.

    The second highest spend (€27 million) was on social services, particularly on facilities for disabled people. 

    The third highest spend (€14 million) was on supporting the living costs of recipient of Hartz IV (German unemployment benefits).

  • New missile defence system for army

    MEADS will replace the Bundeswehr’s current Patriot system by 2025The Defence Ministry has decided to spend several billion euros on a next-generation air defence system developed jointly in Europe and the USA, media reported on Monday.

    Press agency DPA and public broadcaster ARD reported that the Bundeswehr (German military) would be buying the Medium Extended Air Defence System (MEADS), replacing the current Patriot missile system by 2025.

    The project is likely to be the most expensive procurement item in the coming years and is Defence Minister Ursula von der Leyen’s biggest outlay since taking up her post.

  • Germany News in Brief - June 11, 2015

    New car sales down in May

    BERLIN – New car registrations in Germany, a key measure of demand in one of the most important sectors of Europe’s top economy, fell in May, but solely due to the number of public holidays last month, data showed last week.

    A total of 256,400 new cars were registered last month, a decrease of seven per cent compared with the figure for the same month last year, VDA said in a statement.

    The contraction was entirely attributable to the number of public holidays in May and did not signal a real downturn in demand, VDA said.

    A total 451,400 cars rolled off German production lines last month, a drop of six per cent year-on-year, VDA said.

    The number of new cars exported also declined by six per cent to 347,900 units.

  • All the way to the top

    Jon gets into peak condition on Snake Hill in BielefeldSergeant Jon Keen is planning to climb Mt Everest on a mountain bike for charity – but without leaving Bielefeld.

    The Nepal fund-raiser at the end of June will see him climbing a total 8,848m, the height of Mt Everest, on a mountain bike in 24 hours. 

    Jon, who is in the Equipment Care Inspection Team (ECI Team) based in Rochdale Barracks, will be doing this on Jägerweg, commonly known as Snake Hill.

    He said: “I will spend 24 hours continuously riding up and down the hill, starting at 6pm on Sunday, June 28, and riding through the night and finishing on Monday, June 29.”

  • Remarkable chapter

    Library assistant Maria Caldwell celebrates 25 years of service to BFG

    Pictured with Marie are Lt Col Eddie Elms, Comd ETS Germany, who presented her award, and Carol Yates, head of the Army Library and Information Service GermanyElmpt Library’s Senior Library and Information Assistant, Mrs Marie Caldwell has been presesented with a Certificate of Service award in recognition of her 25 years’ service to the British Forces Germany community.

    Marie has dedicated all 25 of her working years to the Army Library and Information Service, starting in Soltau Library in 1990. 

  • Play Safe

    Play SafeThe aim of this article is to help your children stay safe when playing outside the home.

    What is the risk?

    During the summer months, we get lighter nights, extended school holidays and hopefully good weather. 

    Our children obviously want to enjoy themselves and take advantage of the sunshine, spending more time playing outside. 

    While this is a healthy thing to do and should be encouraged for the benefits that it brings, we must also remind them that they need to stay safe.

  • Home-Start Paderborn Scheme

    Come and join in at the three Home-Start run groups which are held at the Village Hall, Arndtstrasse in Paderborn.

    Mondays – Mums & Tots, 9am – 11am. Meet with other mums and get involved in a family-led craft activity.

    Tuesdays – Laughternoons, 1pm – 2.30pm. Fun-filled crafts for youngsters.

    Fridays – Musical Play, 9am – 11am. Children can play various musical instruments and sing nursery rhymes.

    All the groups offer refreshments, snacks and a structured activity. Home-Start does not charge for groups but would appreciate a donation of €1 per family.

    For more information call 05251 528609 (9am – 1pm).

  • Gütersloh Station weekly activities

    Every Monday – PRB Ladies running group for all abilities. PRB Gym, from 5.30pm – all welcome.

    Every Tuesday – AWS Senior Youth Club, 6pm–8pm. For more information call 05241 84 2626.

    Every Wednesday – Mansergh Music Maestros, from 10.30am, at Mansergh Wives Room – all welcome.

    Every Thursday – Book Bears toddler reading group, from 11am in the PRB library.

    Every Thursday – AWS Junior Youth Club, 6pm–8pm. For more information call 05241 84 2626.

  • Don't miss the Queen's Birthday celebrations in Bielefeld

    Celebrations

  • Tiny Eats

    The lunch time club 'Tiny Eats' is aimed at three to five-year-olds to enjoy their packed lunch in a social setting. Afterwards there is a craft activity, free play and a story.

    Younger children are always welcome and parents are asked to bring a packed lunch for them and their child.

    The cost per family is €1 per week.

    Wednesdays, 12.30pm – 2.30pm during term time.

    Location: Between Home-Start and the Welfare Office on Catterick Barracks, Bielefeld.

  • Meet the Minions at the Hoeker-Fest in Herford

    Enjoy a day out in Herford when the Hoeker-Fest comes to town.

    Hoeker-FestFrom June 10, for five days, the town centre will be transformed into an entertainment mile offering fun-packed fairground rides, fabulous food and wonderful wine for visitors to enjoy. 

    The MinionsA highlight will be the chance to meet the Minions when they visit the fair on Saturday, June 13, from midday to 6pm. As well as face-painting, a bouncy castle and children’s games there’s also plenty for adults to enjoy with live music, theatre performances and a fashion plaza.

    Info: Hoeker-Fest, Neuer Markt/Gänsemarkt, Herford. June 10–14. Open: Tue-Fri, 11am-6pm; Sat, 10am-2pm. Visit: www.herford.de/Freizeit-Kultur/Veranstaltungen/Hoeker-Fest and click on Programm Hoeker-Fest for a list of events.

  • Addressing the mail issue

    After recent issues with incorrect addressing of mail to BFPO addresses, which has led to substantial delays, it is important that Forces mail is correctly addressed to British Forces Post Office (BFPO) if the mail is to reach its final destination in good time and order. A common mistake is to add the geographical location of the BFPO, for example, Germany. This will not only cause delay but can add considerable cost as the mail will enter the international system. 

    Example of correct addressing:

    12345678 Cpl S Smith

    29 Regt RLC

    69 PC & MC Sqn

    BFPO 47 – (The BFPO number must always be on the bottom line of the address)

    Germany – (Where a BFPO number is used, geographical place names, such as a country, must not be used as this could lead to items circulating via international civilian postal channels, causing delays or excess postage charges)

    SFA addresses in BFG should only be used for local bills and bank statements. Personal mail should be sent to the place of work.

    For further guidance on either topic your local RLC postal courier operator in the post office will be more than happy to help.

  • Army Movement Guide

    A film has been produced entitled Army Movement Guide that is aimed at Service personnel, civilians and their families to support them during their move back to the UK.

    To watch this go to: www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLv-jN2vurolbIEm1i9x4tDNTHlq5QZgz6 

  • Driving licence changes

    Updates and advice to motorists on abolition of the counterpart to the photocard driving licence

    The paper counterpart to the photocard driving licence is being replaced by an online serviceFrom June 8, the paper counterparts to the photocard driving licence became invalid and are no longer being issued by DVLA. 

    The counterpart was introduced to display driving licence details that could not be included on the photocard. 

    These details include some vehicle categories you are entitled to drive and any endorsement/penalty points.

  • Points of View

    Latest Forces survey is snapshot of Service personnel attitudes

    The survey has shown that around half of Service personnel are satisfied with Service life in generalAround half of Service personnel are satisfied with Service life in general, the latest Armed Forces Continuous Attitude Survey (AFCAS) suggests.

    Moreover, only 35 per cent of the 12,000 surveyed feel they are valued by their Service. 

    The AFCAS 2015 report was published on May 21. Its data is highly valued by the Service chiefs and the Chief of Defence people, because it helps them understand how Service people feel about key issues of Service life.

    Also, it provides support to evidence based personnel policies, such as the New Employment Model, and is a key tool to help policy makers shape and improve personnel policies.

  • Paderborn United Football Club

    PUFC

  • In a Sp1n for Cancer Research UK

    Teams have already registered in the UK, Germany, Cyprus, Saudi Arabia, America and Kenya, with more countries coming on board for the world wide spin/indoor cycling event, Sp1n for LifeSpinners and indoor cyclists from across the globe will be mounting their bikes on Saturday, June 13 to raise funds for Cancer Research UK.

    Sp1n for Life takes place at the same time in every country so while UK fund-raisers are starting their spin at 4pm, spinners in Germany, Cyprus, Kenya and even Canada will be starting their spin at the same time.

    The event is now in its third year and has grown year on year. Vicki Booth and Claire Sebburn, the Sp1n for Life event organisers are looking for an ambitious target.

  • AGC’s Final Sports day

    The sun was shining and spirits were high at Catterick Barracks, Bielefeld as officers and soldiers of the Adjutant General’s Corps came together for their final Corps Sports Day in Germany.

    Sporting events included cross-country, volleyball and football to name but a few, where teams made up of educators, lawyers, Combat HR specialists and Royal Military Police played with and against one another in what turned out to be a fantastic day for all.

    The day included a variety of sportsThe AGC Sports Day has been an annual fixture in Germany for some time. The event brings together AGC personnel from across the Corps stationed in north-west Europe, for a day of sports and an evening of entertainment. Three hundred personnel took part in the event coming from as far as Hohne and Brunssum in the Netherlands.

  • Crossing the finish line

    For the final time in BA(G) history the Inter-unit Athletics Championships was held at the Ludwig-Jahn Stadion in Herford.

    The relays were the highlight of the dayThe BA(G) competition first began back in 1946 when thousands competed; however now, with drawdown out of BA(G) in full flow, the effects were clear.

    This year’s championships attendance was clearly reduced in comparison to previous years; however an impressive 17 teams still made it to this year’s competition, totalling over 250 athletes.

  • Teapot Tuesday – Bake for Heroes

    A fantastic array of treats was on sale at the Teapot Tuesday Bake for Heroes coffee morning in SennelagerOn May 12, the monthly Teapot Tuesday coffee morning at the Normandy Welfare Centre took place, but this particular morning was a Bake for Heroes extravaganza to help raise money for the Help for Heroes charity.  

    Not surprisingly, Paderborn Station came together to show their support and raise awareness of Help for Heroes.

    Families and Service personnel were able to indulge in home-made treats which had been generously donated by members of our community. Meanwhile the children had the chance to get messy and creative in a cupcake decorating competition.

  • Hanseatic museum opened in Lübeck

    The new European Hansemuseum forms part of a museum complex which includes the Castle Friary and an outdoor exhibition spaceOn May 27, Chancellor Angela Merkel officially opened the European Hansemuseum in Lübeck which focuses on 500 years of history of the Hanseatic League.

    Already a major tourist attraction, the old port city, famous for the Holsten Gate, marzipan and a UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Site that is also home to museums dedicated to the city’s three Nobel laureates, authors Thomas Mann and Günter Grass and politician, Willy Brandt, the new museum is another jewel in the crown of the city on the Trave River.

  • Cool caps reduce hair loss during chemo

    Cancer patient Sabine G experienced less hair loss during chemotherapy through wearing the cool capScientists are trialling a special scalp-cooling cap which helps reduce hair loss for cancer patients going through chemotherapy.

    The Hannover Medical College (MHH) has been testing the silicon-based caps for the past year.

    “We were pretty sceptical to begin with, but we’ve been stunned by the results,” said the deputy director of MHH’s women’s clinic, Tyoung-Won Park-Simon. So far 19 breast cancer patients have undergone chemotherapy while using the caps.

    Sabine G who was diagnosed with cancer last September, immediately took up the option.

  • Super-fast frequencies

    Germany last week started an auction of frequencies for mobile phone operators, pledging that users will soon enjoy nationwide super-fast 4G coverage without “black holes” in rural areas.

    The government hopes to raise billions of euros as it sells off the frequencies to the three big providers, Deutsche Telekom, Telefonica Deutschland and Vodafone, and has pledged to use the money to build up the network of fast broadband Internet connections.

  • Germany News in Brief - June 4, 2015

    Germany drops war crimes case

    HAMBURG – Germany will not prosecute a former Nazi SS soldier who allegedly helped kill more than 300 people in Italy during the Second World War because he has dementia and is unfit to stand trial, prosecutors said last week.

    The unnamed 93-year-old former company commander in the 16th SS Panzergrenadier Division is alleged to have been involved in a massacre in northern Italy in August 1944 in which hundreds of people, including many women and children were killed by SS troops.

    “The assessment of the extensive file material had led to the conclusion that the accused would have in all probability been charged with 342 cases of cruel murder with reprehensible motives,” the prosecutors office said in a statement.

    But psychiatric and neurological examinations of the man have shown that he suffers from very advanced dementia, so he would not be able to stand trial under the terms of Germany’s constitution.

  • JSHAO Civilian Housing Brief - Gütersloh, July 1

    The Joint Service Housing Advice Office Civilian Housing Brief will take place on Wednesday, July 1, 9.30am in the Princess Royal Theatre, Gütersloh. 

    Programme:  

    Understanding why YOU need to make housing plans

    The housing options and information about:

    o House Purchase 

    o Affordable Home Ownership Schemes

    o Private Rent

    o Social Housing, including:

    Local Authority Housing

    Housing Associations and Placement Services

    o Homelessness

    MoD and Government Incentives

    o Forces Help To Buy

    o Government Help To Buy

    o Affordable Home Ownership Schemes

    The MoD Referral Scheme

    Support for Single Leavers and Service Veterans

    Independent Financial Advice

    Housing briefs are designed primarily for Service personnel and their dependants who intend to settle in the UK, and open to everyone at any point in their career. Attendance at this course does not count against Resettlement entitlement.

    Book via CTP on Civ 05221 995 3388 466 or Mil 82 3388.

  • Queen's Birthday Celebration - Bielefeld Station

    QBCQBC

  • Herford congregations say farewell

    Revd Richard Downes, Father Len Purcell and Revd Andrew Totten with church organist, Jolanthe MüllerSunday, May 31 saw the final two services in the Station Church at Herford. The Church of the Holy Cross closes in anticipation of the station closure later in July.

    Both the Anglican and Catholic members of the church came together to share a faith lunch, during which a presentation was made to Frau Jolanthe Müller.

  • Ex Rhino Overlord

    Novice cyclists Archie, Steve, Hannah, Scotty, Kerry, Tony and Pants at the start of their three-day marathon cycle ride from Gütersloh to Caen on Ex Rhino OverlordBy Pte Hannah West

    Imagine my shock when the RSWO told me I was going to be part of a team from 74 (HQ) Sqn, 1 Regiment RLC, who were about to cycle from Princess Royal Barracks in Gütersloh to Caen in the Normandy region of France.

    The ride was part of Ex Rhino Overlord which was raising money for ABF The Soldiers’ Charity.

    I’ve never cycled before or even had an interest in cycling, nevertheless I was given a road bike and training commenced under the direction of the QMSI. Four weeks later on May 17 we were on our way and our challenge had begun.

    It was approximately 840km to Caen by bike which would take us three days, cycling through Germany, Holland, Belgium and France.

  • Sp1n for Life 2015 – Sennelager

    SpinSP1N FOR LIFE 2015

    Saturday, June 13, 5pm

    At Dempsey Barracks Gym, Sennelager

    1 HOUR SPIN SESSION

    £15/€21 registration

    To register go to: www.justgiving.com/teams/spinforlyfe15/TeamDempsey

    Contact Anita Bartlett on 01575 4030813. Email: bartlett_anita@hotmail.com

  • JSHAO Civilian Housing Brief - Paderborn, June 30

    The Joint Service Housing Advice Office Civilian Housing Brief will take place on Tuesday, June 30, 9.30am in the Cinema, 41 AEC, Paderborn.

  • 35 Engr Regt Wives Club – Skydiving

    35 Engr Regt wives club have organised Wives Tandem Skydiving Days, June 26–30, from 9am until late each day, at Bad Lippspringe.

    The wives club charity tandem day will give you the chance to take part in a local skydive.

    The jump costs €150 (€180 if you would like it filmed), so why not set up a JustGiving page and see if your friends and family will sponsor you to do the jump for Naomi House?

    For more information email: 35ENGR-RHQ-IHUB-ISA@mod.uk

  • Dawning of an idea

    Loves living in Germany – Briton Dawn Walsh, who wants to network with like-minded expatsAs scores of troops prepare for the move back to the UK this summer, one expat is determined to help those who choose to settle in Germany.

    Dawn Walsh plans to create an online support network for ex-Servicemen and women, and their families, who want to remain here after drawdown.

    Her idea involves not only setting up an online resource but also founding a Services’ club. For a small annual subscription, she believes events could be held so that everyone could meet and share their experiences of life during the drawdown and afterwards.

    “I think it would be really helpful knowing we all had each other to fall back on for help and support as there are so many of us who have settled here,” said Dawn.

     

  • Trust is key

    Relationship adviceTrust is an important part of any relationship. Trust helps us to feel secure in our relationship so that, even if there are challenges further down the line, there’s still a strong foundation to fall back on. 

  • Foster Care fortnight

    could you be a foster carerAt least 8,370 new foster families are needed across the UK during 2015 to provide stable, secure and loving homes for record numbers of fostered children. 

    According to figures released by The Fostering Network,  each day sees over 63,000 children living with over 52,500 foster families in homes across the UK. 

  • Marathon Ali’s Big salute

    BFBS and Forces TV video journalist, Ali Gibson, is running the Edinburgh Half Marathon on Sunday May 31 in aid of the BFBS Big Salute.

    “Through my reporting I’ve seen the wonderful work done by the five charities that are supported by the BFBS Big Salute,” said Ali. “I wanted to play my part and do something to help the Service personnel, families, and veterans who have done so much for us.”

    The annual BFBS Big Salute campaign raises money for: Blesma, The Limbless Veterans, Blind Veterans UK, Combat Stress, FAB (Families’ Activity Breaks) and Veterans Aid.

  • Swimming success

    The final BA(G) Swimming Championships took place at the beginning of the month at the Military Swimming Pool, in Campbell Barracks, Hohne.

    Major unit winners 3 RHAAs in previous years the championships were well supported with a total of 16 teams taking part in the exciting and competitive event.

    This was the first and last time that the event was held at the indoor facility, as this was the final BA(G) swimming championships to be held in the historic Hohne pool prior to its closure in the summer.

  • BA(G) youth tackle twickenham

    24 children from the BA(G) Youth Rugby clubs got the opportunity of a lifetime playing against the Royal Navy on the hallowed turf of Twickenham, the home of England Rugby Union.

    Not only were they able to play at Twickenham, something most under-11’s are unable to do in their lifetime but this was all during the half-time break of the Army Navy game in front of 81,116 people.

    The winning team, The RidgbacksThe four-day trip kicked-off with a farewell speech from Brig Bell, Comd BFG, as well as the presentation to each child of their match shirt.