“Joining The Volunteers”
Back in 1980 after leaving the RHKP and Government service I decided to join the local Territorial Army regiment in what was then the British Crown Colony of Hong Kong .... The Royal Hong Kong Regiment (The Volunteers).
Founded in 1854, by 1980 the Regiment was an integral part of 38 Gurkha Infantry Brigade and under the command of British Forces in Hong Kong.
Because “The Volunteers” was a Reconnaissance Regiment it was affiliated with the Armoured Corps in the UK and as an ‘enlistee’ I joined as a humble ‘trooper’ (private). As a former Royal Marine I was invited to apply to become an officer cadet and a year later was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant.
By 1984 I was promoted to Captain and Regimental Adjutant, the last British – born officer to hold that position.
The Regiment itself was over 1000 strong and organized into 4 x ‘Sabre’ Squadrons ... 1 x Training Wing... 1 x ‘Home Guard’ Squadron (Veterans)... a Women’s Troop ... A Junior Leaders Squadron (14-18) and Head Quarters Squadron.
95% of the rank and file were locally-born Hong Kong Chinese while the officer corps was mixed... half and half-Hong Kong Chinese together with mostly Brits, the occasional Aussie, New Zealander, Canadian and, at one point, even an American (but that’s another story).
EARLY K & C
While I was still adjutant I suggested to the Colonel that King & Country could make a little 4-man Guidon Party Set to celebrate the Regiment and so we produced just 250 sets... Most of these sold to members or former members of the Regiment here in Hong Kong however a few did also go overseas.
REVISITING THE REGIMENT
Last year we decided to ‘revisit’ some of our earlier K&C figures... especially those with a Hong Kong connection and I proposed doing a small number of an upgraded and improved RHKR(V) Guidon Party & Escort sets.
And here they are...
COLONIAL HONG KONG
The Royal Hong Kong Regiment On Parade!
Special Note: After the Sino-British Joint Declaration of 1984 that gave Hong Kong back to China it was announced that the Regiment would be disbanded in 1995, two years before the handover.
The Regimental Badge was a British Crown surmounting two Chinese Dragons atop a scroll with the latin motto: “Nulli Secundus in Oriente” (Second-to-none in the Orient).