On the 23rd October 2014 the Friends of PWRR (our military charity) held an Evening with Heroes dinner and charity auction at the Grand Connaught Rooms, London.
At 0500hrs we took off from Harrods aviation on Lloyd’s private jet, where I was asked if I would like to join the pilots for take off in the jump seat (great experience). On arrival we were met by Capt Bermingham, who was the hosting officer for the visit, and taken to the Officers’ mess. After dropping off our bags and heading downstairs, we were given a brief by the CO and other mess members on what the 2nd Battalion have been up to operationally over the last seven months and what Cyprus offers the soldiers.
We then headed to the indoor weapons range to get our hands on the rifles before going to the live firing range.
On arrival, the soldiers had set up stands and explained what job they did on the battlefield, the kit and the equipment they used. This was great as it gave the visitors time to put the protective kit and equipment on and also try a ration pack, which they actually enjoyed!
We then saw a fire-power demo given by support company. We watched the mechanics of a section attack getting carried out by the soldiers who did themselves proud as they demonstrated how they would fight the enemy.
The Dorfman team were loving life at this point, and after doing a pistol and rifle shoot it was time to move to the range for live firing.
I could see nerves and the concentration levels kick in but the safety staff played a great part in making this work and ensuring everyone enjoyed the experience and the group left for the evening buzzing about firing live ammunition.
We had one hour to get into black tie ready for a Regimental dinner. We we’re meet by a champagne reception and hosted at the highest level. During the meal the corp of drums give a stunning display that was rewarded by a great cheer.
We got to bed at 0300hrs, a little bit worse for wear, after a night of hanging out with the officers and finding out about life as a Tiger.
Reveille was at 0730hrs and the weather was about 17 degrees, perfect for heading to the beach for a day of sports, including waterboarding and canoeing. We all got stuck in and really enjoyed what the water sports team laid on for us. Afterwards we went on a quad bike safari, this was very good with some stunning views.
After a full on 36hrs it was time to head home. I can honestly say I was proud to be a Tiger, 2nd Battalion put on a stunning display that has given lasting memory’s to Lloyd, Charles, Charlie, Olly, Jake and Adam. I would like to thank the 2nd Battalion for looking after us during our visit.