Ash Manor CCF join 16 Brigade Officers Mess Commemoration

16 Brigade Officers Mess Commemoration

On 22 February 1972, a Ford Cortina, packed full of explosives, detonated outside the 16th Parachute Brigade Officers’ Mess. The explosion took the lives of a gardener, five civilian members of the mess staff and an Army chaplain. The attack was claimed by the Official Irish Republican Army, who stated the bombing was in retaliation for ‘Bloody Sunday’. On the 22nd of February 2024, the Ash Manor Combined Cadet Force (CCF) joined the commemoration to remember those who lost their lives 52 years ago.

SSI George Sisson (Ash Manor CCF) said;

In February 1972, an Irish Republican Army (IRA) bombing targeted the Officers Mess of the 16 Brigade Parachute Regiment, resulting in the tragic loss of seven lives and injuries to over 20 individuals. The Ash Manor CCF cadets, along with Head Teacher Mrs. Bailey, solemnly attended the commemoration of the fallen soldiers and civilians on Pennyfathers Road in Aldershot.

This poignant event, organised by the Parachute Regimental Association and other Veteran-focused organizations, united Cadets, current Soldiers, and Veterans in honouring the memory of those who perished. Despite the cold and wet afternoon, the Cadets upheld a commendable standard, representing the school with distinction.

Two cadets were even awarded Colonel Challenge coins by the Colonel Commandant of the Parachute Regiment for their outstanding conduct. This commemoration served as a powerful reminder of our community’s resilience in the face of adversity and underscored the importance of striving for a peaceful future.

BFBS Aldershot report

Richard Wyeth, of  BFBS Aldershot, spoke to Tommy Simpson who remembers the bombing and his efforts to continue to commemorate this event. BFBS Aldershot shared this video via their Facebook page.

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