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Message  FAAA le Mar 17 Déc 2013, 22:29


The First Allied Airborne Association has been very active since the January Militaria show and the groups indoor display representing the 509th PIB.

Below is a snap shot of what the group has been doing this quarter of 2013.  A few weeks ago we heard a wisper that the FAAA were on its last legs, certainly not, we are a little smaller and a new EXEC team are running things, we are rather better focussed and numbers are coming in to replace the older members who have moved on to other things.  2013 has proved just as busy, if not more so than past years, if that is possible Smile

Events take place faster than full reports can be posted, however a fuller report on each event will be posted in due course.

First event then was the fantastic indoor Stoneleigh show.

This years event like all the past years events had been looked forward to for some months.  After what  seemed ages it was good to get back into kit and organise and undertake a display and it has to be said the Stoneligh Militaria 2013 show provides us all with what we do the hobby for, a great Social event, shopping and browsing time, an indor out of the elements dislay with all the challenges it throws up and a great 40's based dance, attended by many of the people we know in the dance  and living history scene.

The show always presents us with a challenge to pick a unit all in the group have an interest in and one all in the outfit can do to some degree of authenticity and this year was no exception and it was decided to launch this years new group direction and get back to our core values with a specialist Airborne impression.  To that end the 509th Parachute Infantry Combat Team in the Invasion of Southern France was chosen.

Since the end of January the group has represented the 509th Parachute Infantry Combat Team, The First Special Service Force, the 17th Airborne Division, 86th Cavalry Reconnaissance Squadron, the 41st Armoured Infantry Regiment, 2nd Armoured Division and the 39th Infantry Rigiment, 9th Infantry Division.

The groups first out door adventure was in the Chiltern Hills as First Special Service Force In Feb. For this event a recce team made up from FAAA EXEC's braved the icy cold and snow to undertake a recce of the route the group will use as part of their exercise in October.  The weekend was a great success and combined the EXECS AGM and events planning meeting and the challenge of hill walking in period gear.

The next deployment was "Exercise Fast Ball" in March where a detachment made up of the group Execs and Non-coms deployed to Ashdown Camp in support of the British Airborne Platoons annual training weekend. The British Airborne Platoon or BAP is a group made up from several other groups who come together for training weekends, Private Battles and specialist events throughout the year and is headed up by the OC of the OXFORDSHIRE AND BUCKINGHAMSHIRE LIGHT INFANTRY LIVING HISTORY GROUP.

Originally this was to be just a pre-event recce for our own groups Ashdown deployment later in the year and had only involved the CO and his Driver. However having had a chat to Andy Ansell who was running the "British Airborne Platoon" groups training weekend at Ashdown on that weekend (he had agreed we can could pitch up for our recce on his weekend) we kind of came up with the idea of providing an "OPFOR" (Opposing Force) for their Sunday morning tactical exercise.

The plan was to deploy in time for Sunday morning Breakfast with a briefing to take place prior to the exercise where we were to receive orders for our part in the final test exercise.

A great weekend which it is hopped will be repeated.

The first main weekend in the field for the group was an outstanding event.

To say it was cold could well be the understatement of the year, however the sun came out and it was thankfully dry.

A big gamble to attend an event this early in the year, however with keen members of the group raring to go the weekend deserved to be successful and it was big time.  The venue here in England was the location for most of the filming for the 1970's film the Eagle Has Landed.

For this event we chose the 17th Airborne Division


The next event was in fact a one day Jeep Raid event.  the weekend kicked off with elements of the group meeting up at this CP for a little bit of a social down the local followed by some take away nosh on the Saturday evening.

Sunday bright and early the main party met up with others at the Chaplains CP to Jeep Recce to the Bushy Hall event.

The day for the most part stayed dry and fine but with high winds, however a great day with mates was had at a very friendly show.

Great meet up in all respects.

This past weekend brings us up to date and saw the group deploy as a two tube section of the Mortar Platoon, Heavy Weapons Company, 1st Battalion, 39th Infantry Regiment, 9th Infantry Division.

It would seem that 2013 is the year for friendly events as this is the second major event this year where we have been made most welcome.

In the past we have missed this one due to other commitment, but it would seem it has been our loss as this was a top notch weekend run by a very dedicated group of people headed up by Lez Hearn.

The weather helped of course, however the weekend could not of been so good without the FAAA members who attended all mucking in to represent the 39th in the field.

It is fair to say this was one of the top weekends for the group in recent years, it had all we look for in an event and the group all had a laugh together, in the field, in the battle and in the beer tent/pub.

The west coast boys worked very hard in ensuring the success of the event by travelling up early on the Friday morning to load stores into the support vehicle before shadowing the military vehicles to the event.  The team work is now down to a fine art and the Mortar Platoon and Company CP were established in very little time giving us plenty of down time before the show opened on the Saturday morning.  Two great days of displaying followed which included taking part in the Sunday Battle, something we dont often do, however the Platoon performed very well under fire and lobbed many rounds into the enemy positions and once they were neutralized continued to take out the crowd line Smile.

The next event saw us changing into our very best class A Uniform for Honor Guard Duties at the 96th Bomb Group Veterans visit.

It was a great day hosted by Jill and Alfie at the Norfolk 96th Bomb Group museum open day.

Outstanding job done with the AAF Color Guard, Veterans, families and 96th Association were the nicest bunch of people you could wish to meet.

Their appreciation of the task we set ourselves I hope made the travelling by some of the team from Bristol to Norfolk worth the time, next to the Americans it must of been the longest distance to travel for this one day event.

Commitment can not be over stated.

The last event of the first half of 2013 was the Airborne Weekend at Duxford.  Another outstanding event which saw us back at Duxford after a bit of a break.  Working with the finest Groups in the UK it was nice to be back and we look forward to returning next year to even a bigger event.

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Date d'inscription : 14/11/2013

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