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4th Western Brigade Stand Down

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Garfield
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Pat first of all congratulations on a great report. It must have been a sad day for those serving in the Brigade. What a historical event but very little known of it. General Ahearn's speech was very poignant. It was obviously heart wrenching for the Brigade. Rolling up the flag and the lights out salute at the end were very moving also.

 

You know I have a big interest in the Military Pat and thanks for sharing this.

 

Rich,

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I was surprised RTÉ didn't have a camera at it, Rich... re-organising the army like this is a big deal, especially since the Western Brigade was in existence since the formation of the State. It ended up being very low key, with only a few local reporters and guests present.

 

My cousin is/was with the 4th Cav but he's in Lebanon on UN duty at the moment, so he missed the occasion... I sent him on the link so he and the other lads from unit out there can see what it was like.

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It was always going to happen I remember when I joined the f c a artillery in 1976 thinking it was mad having a unit so.far from the glen of immal and having so many little barracks all over the country.Correct me if I am wrong but I think they are still using the same panhards they must be ancient ,same as the 4.5 inch howitzers I fired,ww1 gun 74 years old at the time only difference was the road tyres and not cart wheels and the 25 pounder was 42 years old only got rid of them 2009 74 years old a credit to the people that cared so well for the guns we used and got us home safely every time

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garfield, its always a sad day when units stand down and barracks close and now with a brigade gone, you have to ask whats next? we knew for years this was going to happen, but the carry on by the top brass in the restructure of the army just beggers belief! my heart goes out to the Cav lads, first seeing their barracks in longford close with the uncertainty and upheavel that comes with that, the move to athlone, and now faced with going to the curragh? i know some will say its good they have a job, and that may be so, but it does seem to be aimed at the reducing the force yet again by making the more senior soldier retire. it is a hard truth to face that a lot of lads who gave of themselves unselfishly and bravely in the defence and security of the state and in UN operations worldwide just have enough of the new army logic. i wish the members of the 4th Cav and the other units of the Western Bde, and their families, all the best in their future.

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It was always going to happen I remember when I joined the f c a artillery in 1976 thinking it was mad having a unit so.far from the glen of immal and having so many little barracks all over the country.Correct me if I am wrong but I think they are still using the same panhards they must be ancient ,same as the 4.5 inch howitzers I fired,ww1 gun 74 years old at the time only difference was the road tyres and not cart wheels and the 25 pounder was 42 years old only got rid of them 2009 74 years old a credit to the people that cared so well for the guns we used and got us home safely every time

 

Some Panhard AMLs still remain in service, but the Cavalry's main vehicles these days are Mowag Pirhanas and RG-32s (as seen in the video), which in fairness are serious bits of kit. The Panhards date from the 1960s, so maybe not all that surprising that some are still used, especially since they've been upgraded and re-engined down through the years... sure, look at the USAF still flying B-52s, with instances where some pilots have found themselves flying the same planes their grandads did!

 

garfield, its always a sad day when units stand down and barracks close and now with a brigade gone, you have to ask whats next? we knew for years this was going to happen, but the carry on by the top brass in the restructure of the army just beggers belief! my heart goes out to the Cav lads, first seeing their barracks in longford close with the uncertainty and upheavel that comes with that, the move to athlone, and now faced with going to the curragh? i know some will say its good they have a job, and that may be so, but it does seem to be aimed at the reducing the force yet again by making the more senior soldier retire. it is a hard truth to face that a lot of lads who gave of themselves unselfishly and bravely in the defence and security of the state and in UN operations worldwide just have enough of the new army logic. i wish the members of the 4th Cav and the other units of the Western Bde, and their families, all the best in their future.

 

I think a lot of the personnel are transferring to the 6th Infantry Battalion in Athlone, Seamus. Swapping Glengarries for black berets is something they don't find ideal, but better than a long trip to the Curragh every day from the Midlands where their families have settled!

Edited by Garfield
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[quote name=garfieldsghost;

'I think a lot of the personnel are transferring to the 6th Infantry Battalion in Athlone.'

 

the problem is that everyone wants to transfer there but there wont be enough places for the amount of lads applying.

one thing that must be stressed is that the equipment that the army have and will be getting is amongst the best available. again ' date=' some of it will be difficult to train with, given the fact that there isnt enough military land available to use the stuff! the media will reveal all in due course.........cant tell you any more - or i'll have to kill you!!!smiley-face-soldier.gif

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the problem is that everyone wants to transfer there but there wont be enough places for the amount of lads applying.

 

Well, I'm only going on what I was told... :)

 

In other news... there are rumblings that the entire RDF is going to get the chop.

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for any member who has found their units disbanded, im told they will have to formally apply for a position in whatever new unit is available near their location. the system is designed to piss people off, lads who were used to the training facilities of military barracks just dont want to waste time in a cold hall in the arse hole of nowhere, with no equipment to train with. truck loads have left because they feel they have been let down my the authorities. the rumour has rumbled very loudly about the future of the reserve, but the truth is that nobody knows, the brass seem to be making it up as they go. they will have to sort out the regulars first, and that itself will take time. one thing for sure, it will be downsized.

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  • 2 weeks later...
another home for asylum seekers?

 

No, nothing like that. Some of the peripheral buildings were allocated to the local VEC, which is located next door, and the RDF still occupy a building attached to it, but the main buildings, gym, football field and accomodation blocks are lying idle. A county museum is supposed to be located in there, somewhere, but it'll still leave a lot of space to be filled. Plus, the RDF unit is due to be disestablished next month, while there are all sorts of rumours about the VEC being merged with Westmeath, which could mean a move to somewhere like Mullingar.

 

I've talked to councillors and submitted a proposal about 18 months ago advocating its use as a larger museum facility (the National Museum and OPW have an endless list of items in storage because of a lack of space) which could act as a major tourist attraction to the town, but thinking outside the box isn't a strong point of theirs, it seems. Their report on future uses for it kept referring to 'best practice' - basically copying what's been done at other former barracks around the country...

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