The Royal Logistic Corps Conductor Parchment Ceremony


The Conductors Branch, The Royal Logistic Corps Association,

AGM & Re-Union Dinner & Weekend Celebrations 2015

15 – 16 May 2015.


David Southall.

(The Conductors Branch, Vice Chairman)

So this is it, my last Story (more about this later) of how the “Conductors” Celebrations went:-

Well before we go into the story of what happened I must point out that some Former Conductor’s and their Wives/Partners, who live far away, especially north of the M62, had arrived the night before and once again there being no Mess Accommodation, this time in Dalton Barracks, Abingdon, were staying at the

“Travel Lodge’s” on the A34 at Oxford or in the “Premier Inn” in Abingdon

DAY 1 (15 May 2015)

The day started with Serving & Former Conductor’s and their Wives/Partners, arriving at the

Warrant Officers and Sergeants’ Mess, Dalton Barracks, Abingdon. We had been asked to be there by 1015am and assemble in the “Glamorgan Room” where there would Tea/Coffee and biscuits waiting.

The Royal Logistic Corps

Conductor’s Parchment Ceremony 2015.

The Royal Logistic Corps, “Conductor’s Parchment Ceremony” 2015 was held in

Warrant Officers and Sergeants’ Mess, Dalton Barracks, Abingdon the home of 3 Log Sp Regiment RLC, on the 15th May 2015, by kind permission of The Regimental Sergeant Major, WO1 (RSM) Garry Pierce RLC.

With everyone assembled in the “Glamorgan Room” we were firstly briefed by the Senior Conductor,

WO1 (Cdr) Simon Goldby RLC who thanked the Serving and Former Conductors, their Wives/Partners for attending the Parchment Ceremony and supporting the New Conductors who were about to receive their Parchments. Then followed a briefing by WO1 (RSM) Garry Pierce RLC, who had kindly allowed the Branch Members full use of the Warrant Officers and Sergeants’ Mess and who was the Master of Ceremonies for the Parchment Ceremony. 

 We were then joined by The RLC Corps Colonel, & Corps Adjutant from Headquarters The RLC at Deepcut.

At 1100hrs the VIP and Official Guests arrived and entered the Glamorgan Room and the 2015 Parchment Ceremony began.

The VIP presenting this year’s Parchments was once again:

Major General (Retd) MD Wood CBE, The President of Conductor’s Branch. He was accompanied by, Colonel DN Corrie, MBE, The RLC Corps Colonel.

Prior to presenting the Parchments General Wood addressed those attending on various points on history about Conductors, including the Indian Mutiny and Cdr Buckley VC, and what the Appointment of Conductor means to selected to hold the Appointment.

Capt RC Bates RLC, The RLC Corps Adjutant then read out the history of the Appointment.

The Conductors Parchments were then presented to the following

Warrant Officers Class One:-

WO1 (Cdr) Gavin Emmerson RLC.

Logistic Specialist (Supply).

Command Ordnance Warrant Officer, Army Headquarters

WO1 (Cdr) Jon Hall RLC. – Chef.

Command Food Services Warrant Officer, Army Headquarters.

History was made at this year’s Conductor Parchment Ceremony.

Cdr’s Emmerson & Hall are the first 2 Warrant Officers Class One, to be appointed Conductor, having served their whole career only in

The Royal Logistic Corps.

    Cdr Emmerson & Cdr Hall

With Parchment Ceremony completed, The VIP’s & the Serving & Former Conductors, Wives & Partners all moved outside for the Official photographs to be taken.

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While the Branch Members returned inside, the VIPs & Serving Conductors then had their official photograph taken.

Left to Right:

Back Row:(Standard Orderly) WO1 (Cdr) Hall. WO1 (Cdr) Sedgwick. Capt Bates. WO1 (Cdr) Emmerson. (Standard  Orderly)

                                                                                                                    (Corps Adj)

Front Row:                              Col Corrie.         Maj Gen Wood.     WO1 (Cdr) Goldby. WO1 (Cdr) Cockram.

                                                   (Corps Col)                                       (Senior Conductor)

It was then time for lunch. During lunch the VIP’s took time out to speak to all those attending the Parchment Ceremony. After Lunch, Branch Members were invited to look at a capability demonstration in the Glamorgan Room by Soldiers of 3 Log Sp Regiment RLC.

At 1330hrs the VIP and Official Guest left, and the 2015 Conductor Parchment Ceremony came to a close for another year.

Conductors Branch, The Royal Logistic Corps Association,

Annual General Meeting 2015

The Branch AGM 2015 started at 1400hrs, and was opened by the Branch Chairman (David Patterson), with a total of 18 Members attending.

The Chairman firstly welcomed all those attending; which included new members, who were attending for the first time, he then informed the meeting that The President of Conductor’s Branch,

Major General (Retd)  Wood CBE, would not be attending due to General Wood’s wife being unwell at their home, the Chairman also stated the our President would also not be attending the Branch Reunion Dinner.

He asked the Branch Secretary, Gordon Webster to read the minutes of the 2014 AGM, which were read and passed. The Chairman informed the Branch that our Treasurer Bob White was also not be attending due his wife also being unwell, however Mike Coyle had collected the Financial Statement of the branch funds and read it out to the Branch Members. Mike, who is also the Branch Web Master, read out an update on the Website.

The Branch Chairman then give the members an update on how the Branch was coming along,  he then asked if there were any proposition from the Branch Members and with none forth coming he informed the Branch Members it was time to vote in the Branch Committee, he explained the composition of the Committee and who were currently in those appointments, he then informed the Branch that I was standing down from the Vice Chairman appointment after 8 years (I had said in 2007 that I would only be doing it for 1 Year), the Chairman thanked me for the work I had done while on the Committee. He asked if any Branch Member wished to stand for the Vice Chairman Appointment, and that he had one nomination (from Me) and that was for the current Senior Conductor Simon Goldby to take the post when he retires from HM Forces later this year, this was passed unanimously, so I still in the post until September.

The Branch Chairman thanked The Royal Logistic Corps Senior Conductor, WO1 (Cdr) Simon Goldby, who is the Serving Member on the Branch Committee, for his support over the last 12 Months and wished him well when he retires later this year, after serving 22 years in HM Forces, and informed those attending that

WO1 (Cdr) Adie Cockram would be taking over the Senior Conductors Appointment & the Serving Member on the Branch Committee, as from September.

Finally it was proposed that next year’s AGM, Branch Reunion Dinner and hopefully The 2016 Conductor Parchment Ceremony be held in May 2016 at a venue yet to be decided. The meeting then closed at 1445hrs.

With the AGM finished, the gentlemen return to the Sergeants’ Mess Bar area to re-join their Wives/Partners.

Attendees then returned to their accommodation, before returning for the Annual Conductors’

Re-Union Dinner Night.

The Conductors Branch, Re-Union Dinner Night.

With the Transport on time, picking up in Oxford and Abingdon, we even stopped on the way to pick up

WO1 (RSM) Garry Pierce, to save him walking, everyone arrived in good time for the Dinner Night.

The branch were this year delighted to host two Guests of Honour,

WO1 (RSM) Garry Pierce RLC of 3 Log Sp Regt RLC & Cpl Chris Witherington of 9 Regt RLC.

At 1900 hrs Dinner was called and this year for the first time we were piped into dinner by Former Conductor Larry Cunningham.

During the dinner members were entertained by a quartet from the RLC Band and after the comfort break,

(where we were once more piped in) we were entertained with a Black & White show by the RLC Corps of Drums.

At this point I feel I must point out faux pas made by members this year:- 

Firstly, Darren Garwood & Charlie McClure and their wives who had booked in at the Premier Inn, however not the one where transport was picking up from, but in Oxford, Charlie admitted he was the one who got it wrong and had given Darren the wrong location.

Secondly, The Senior Conductor Simon Goldby, who had not only forgot his Miniature Medals but also his Mess Dress Trousers. Never mind Simon next year it’s Black Tie Dinner Suit.

Lastly, it was noted that of all the Serving Members attending, only the Senior Conductor Simon Goldby and  RSM Garry Pierce stood for the RLC Corps March.

After the Dinner and Entertainment, the Branch Chairman David Patterson, firstly thanked the Band and Corps of Drum and then the Mess Staff.

He then welcomed everyone to this year’s Reunion Dinner especially the 2 new Conductors. He give an apology from President of Conductor’s Branch, General Wood.

 David then went on to thank, firstly myself, he  informed everyone that I was standing down from the Vice Chairman appointment after 8 years and thanked me for the work I had done while on the Committee.

He then thanked Larry Cunningham for piping everyone into dinner and lastly he thanked WO1 RSM Garry Pierce for allowing kindly allowed the Branch full use of the Warrant Officers and Sergeants’ Mess for their AGM and Reunion Dinner.

The branch chairman David Patterson then made 3 presentations, Firstly a framed Parchment to former Conductor Arthur Kinson;

Secondly as a way of thanks and appreciation, a framed copy of a news article in the Ashton-Under-Lyne Reporter & Chronicle was presented to Cpl Chris Witherington.

The article records his involvement and personal commitment to the successful refurbishment of the grave site of former Conductor John Buckley VC at the Tower Hamlets Cemetery, London.

(Conductor John Buckley VC was born in Stalybridge, which the Ashton-Under-Lyne Reporter & Chronicle covers)

                      David Patterson & Arthur Kinson                                                            David Patterson & Chris Witherington

and lastly a Conductors’ branch plaque was presented to Garry Pierce, RSM 3 Log Sp Regt.

RSM Garry Pierce, & David Patterson

After the presentations, a raffle was held. The Chairman, then spoke for the last time to inform every one of the timings for the next day’s visits, and then it was off to the “Sergeants’ Mess Bar” for a few more drinks and to reminisce of years gone by. Just before midnight, transport took the members back to their hotels.

So there it was, Day 1 of the 2015 Conductor’s Celebrations over and done with for another year.


DAY 2 – 16 MAY 2016. – THE VISITS.

Following breakfast, branch members and friends visited Blenheim Palace for a guided tour, focussed on the time Sir Winston Churchill spent at the Palace.

On arrival at Blenheim Palace our Chairman and Secretary went off to get our tickets, on their return they informed everyone that we were to make our way to the “Marlborough” Room where Tea/Coffee & Biscuits had been arranged.

While having our Tea/Coffee our guide for the tour of Blenheim Palace introduced herself, she said that she was a retired School Teacher and her name was “MRS WISEMAN” and that we could call her “MRS WISEMAN”.

One of the branch members was heard to say “my friends call me XXXXX, but you can call me “SIR”.

A lot of the members found our guide very condescending and patronising and she did not once take on board that it was a group of Adults and not Children she was speaking too and that some of our members were old enough to be her parents. That said her knowledge of Sir Winston Churchill’s time spent at the Palace was First Class. The tour of Blenheim Palace took about 1˝ Hrs, stopping at various locations within the Palace, where information about Sir Winston Churchill were pointed out.

At 12:25 the tour ended and our guide “MRS WISEMAN” said that we were now free to tour the Palace in our own time. Our Chairman David Patterson informed her that we had lunch booked in the “Marlborough” Room at 12:30, she then said in her School Teachers voice, “I suggest you hurry up then”, and quick as a flash David replied “I suggest you show us the way then”.

The Branch Secretary had arranged the visit and lunch, but Gordon, the Members did not think lunch would be this Formal????


After lunch there was a short time to look round the Palace shop and buy souvenirs before it was time to

re-join our Coach and travel onto New Theatre, Oxford to watch the show:-

The New Theatre that afternoon was packed out with people of all ages. The show was First Class, and at the interval, our Chairman David Patterson, arranged once again for ICE CREAMS for everyone, mind you this year he did ask what type of Ice Cream we all would like.

With the show over, we all emerged from the New Theatre to find our Coach waiting for us, (well done, to our coach driver, Mark), within 10 minutes we were all aboard and on our way back to Abingdon, where we were to have our last meal, “A Fish / Pie & Chips Supper”, before setting of home, or for some members another night at their hotels, and with that and the Conductors Re-union Celebrations were over for another year.

(The Last Supper 2015)

May I at this point, on behalf of  The Branch Members, say A big Thank You to the Branch Committee for a First Class Re-Union Dinner and a cracking day of visits, and to the Senior Conductor, WO1 (Cdr) Simon Goldby  RLC for his involvement in the organising of the Parchment Ceremony.

To you all: - “THANK YOU”

The Conductors Branch, The Royal Logistic Corps Association, would like to take the opportunity to wish

 The Senior Conductor Simon Goldby “Good Luck and Best Wishes” when he leaves HM Forces later this year, after 22 Years’ Service, however this is not the end for Simon, has he takes over in September from me as The Branch Vice Chairman. The Branch would also like to say Congratulations to WO1 (Cdr) Adie Cockram who will be taking over the Senior Conductors Appointment from September.

Well that’s it, all over, my last Story / Write up of the Conductors Parchment Ceremony & Reunion Celebrations. I took over the mantle of doing this in 2009 from our old friend, the Late Dennis Bradley and I hope I kept up the standard he set. It has been my pleasure & privilege to write these Stories / Write up’s over the last 7 years and I hope you have all enjoyed reading them as much as I did writing them. I look forward to the 2016 Celebration where I can just sit back and watch.

So it over to you “Simon” and I wish you all the best and hope you enjoy being The Branch Vice Chairman & Press Officer as much as I did.