British & Commonwealth units serving in Borneo
Brunei and supporting operations 1962 - 1966
This is a list of the British forces that served during the Borneo Confrontation 1962-66. It is NOT our intention to ignore any unit which served. We wish to get the facts correct and produce a accurate list of all the units who served.
Due to time pressures and a lack of staff, we can no longer update these pages. This may change in the future, please bear with us.
|6||Canberra B.16||6 spent three months at Kuantan I think in 1965 flying canberra b16,s which we brought from cyprus.Exact date coincided with the grounding of all hastings transports so we went from Changi to Kuantan by RAF coach not a trip I would recommend. The boss at the time was probably Sqdn Leader Pickard and Cyprus based canberras were rotated with the german based sqdns.|
|13||Canberra PR.9||Detachments at Tengah, Singapore during 1965 throught to early 1967. From Tengah our aircraft flew over both Borneo, often 'landing-away' at Labuan, and Malaya and probably anywhere else that they chose to go as there weren't many aircraft or missiles around at that time that could reach their altitude.|
|15||Victor B Mk 1A||XV Sqdn went to RAF Tengah, First two Victor B Mk 1A's left RAF Cottesmore (Home Base)at midnight on the 6th of December 1963 early January 1964 we moved up to RAAF Butterworth. we continued to operate from there until the squadron came home to the UK to disband in the October of that year (1964). The squadron rotated its crews/ ground crews and aircraft between Cottesmore and Butterworth during this period of time.
During the early part of this detachment at RAF Tengah. Victor XH648 successsfully dropped 35 X 1000 lbs bombs in a single drop on the target range at Song Song Malaysia. This aircraft was flown by Flt Lt Thompson and his crew. Squadron Commander during this period of time was Wing Commander John Mathews. Thanks to David Haylett for this entry.
|16||Canberra B(I) 8||Detached from RAF Laarbruch to Kuantan around February to May 1965. CO was Wing Commander Bennet.|
|20||Hunter FGA 9||Tengah, detachment to Chieng Mai, Kuching and Labuan.||26||Bristol Belvedere||Kuching 1965/66.|
|28||Hunter GA9||based Kai Tak (Hong Kong) detachments Labuan/Kuching|
|32||Canberra B2, B15 from July 1961.||Based at Akrotiri, Cyprus. Detachments at Tengah and Kuantan|
|33||Bloodhound Mk2||Based at RAAF Butterworth. Commanding Officer Sqn Ldr Hank Costain. My tour commenced with an attachment to 65 Sqn Seletar from January 1965 to April 65. I then joined my Squadron at Butterworth serving there until my repatriation on 12th July 1967. Thanks to John Thorne for this entry.|
|34||Blackburn Beverley||Based at Seletar, detachments based at Labuan|
|34||Beverley||Based Seletar, detachment at Labuan|
|45||Canberra B2, B15 from September 1962||Tengah, Detachments at Labuan, Kuching, Kuantan and Kai Tak.|
|48||Blackburn Beverly C1, Handley Page Hastings C1 & C2||Changi|
|52||Dakota/Valetta||Butterworth. Voice flight at Penang until 1961, then whole squadron at Butterworth, later moved to Labuan.. Valetta detachment at Labuan. CO Squadron Leader Geoff Moss.|
|55||Victor B1A||This Squadron was equipped with Victor B1A bombers and was detached from UK to Tengah on a rotating system with 57 Squadron. Each detachment was scheduled for 2 months but because of the escalation of hostilities (the landing of paratroops in Johore and their subsequent infiltration to Singapore, the detachment of summer 1964 was extended to 4 and a half months. Many Thanks to Gerry Law for this entry.|
|57||Victor B1A||See Above. An Air Force Cross was awarded to a 57 Squadron pilot for supreme airmanship when his aircraft suffered severe engine blow-up.|
|60||Javelin FAW9||Tengah, Detachments at Butterworth, Kuching, Labuan and Kai Tak.|
|64||Javelin FAW9R||Binbrook, detachments at Tengah. Squadron moved to Tengah in April 1965, detachments at Butterworth, Kuching and Labuan.|
|65||Bloodhound||based Seletar, detachment at Kuching|
|66||Bristol Belvedere HC1||Seletar, Detachments at Kuching, Brunei, Labuan and Butterworth.
My father was an electronic technician with 66, he served in Borneo (under Sqd Leader Austin). He helped repair the radio on : Bristol 192 Belevedere helicopters - working in and around Sarawak - Hearts and Minds operation between 1964-1965.
He then moved to Seletar with the 66 sqn under Sqn leader Gray - he worked in Singapore from 1965-1967 - with frequent tours back to Borneo.
Thanks to Mr Chidgey's daughter: Sandra (Chidgey) Arthur for this entry.
|81||Canberra PR7||Tengah, Detachment at Labuan|
|103||Whirlwind HC10||Reformed at Seletar and detachments sent to Kuching, Labuan and Kai Tak.|
|110 (Hyderabad)||Sycamore HR 14s and Whirlwind HAR10 (from 7/63)||Based at Labuan, moved to Kuching in 1965. 4 choppers. Detachments based at Labuan May 1965-?, Sibu and Nanga Gaat 1965-66.|
|RAF Simanggang detachment, 103/110 squadrons||Whirlwind HAR10/HC10|| I was detactched From RAF Kuching to RAF Simanggang Apr-Aug 1966. RAF ground crew maintaining 4 RAF whirlwind helicopters with aircrew from 103/110 Sqn detatched from RAF Kuching.
RAF detatchment had been at Simangang for some time before I joined it. Detachment closed when confrontation finished
|204||Shackleton MR2||RAF Ballykelly supplied a detachment of Shackleton mk 11 and ground crew to RAF Changi & Labuan, 3 month rotation for ground crew. I was there in 1966.|
|205||Shackleton MR2||Changi, Detachment at Seletar.
205 Squadron maintained a detachment at Labuan from 1963 to at least 1966 for the prosecution of various Confrontation Ops, including anti-infiltration and deep penetrations of Indonesian airspace. This was in parallel to the 'Hawkmoth' ops that were mounted from Changi and occasionally from RAAF Butterworth, designed to interdict Indonesian FPBs that were raiding across the Malacca Straits.
In addition 205 mounted a short detachment to RAAF Darwin in 1964 when we were roled in our medium level bombing configuration with 15 1,000lb bombs. The targets were not revealed, but were probably in Java: it was not a comforting thought! Thanks to Phil Burton for this entry.
|205||Shackleton MR3||Operating out of Labuan for the first 3 months of 1966, we had flown - 206 Sqdn. Kinloss, there in the January & returned Mar '66 - leaving our A/C to be used by another set of crews.|
|209||Pioneer CC1 & Twin Pioneer CC1 & CC2s||Seletar, Detachments at Labuan, Kuching, Sibu and Bayan Lepas. B Flight 209 squadron had a single Pioneer based at Sibuy with a single pilot and 2 groundcrew which rotated fornightly. At the end of the confrontation, 209 mounted a three pioneer formation back to Seletar from Labuan which flew passed Sibu, overnighting in Kuching and accompanied by a Shackleton from Changi for the sea crossing to Singapore. Thanks to Peter Stewart for this entry.|
|215||Argosy||Based Changi, detachment at Labuan. CO was Wng.Cdr. Talbot Williams. Thanks to Patrick Halliday for this entry.
215 Sqn was also on detachment at RAF Kuching from June 1964 to September 1966 The crews were normally rotated on a two week basis C.O.as before
|225||Whirlwind||based at Seletar from November 1953 and deployed to Kuching the following month. The squadron had two permanent detachments to army units at Simmangang (upto 6 aircraft) and Lundu (1 airccraft). The unit deployed for operations against Indonesian terrorists infiltrating into Malaysia and Borneo.
Home base Kuching, Detached to the 1e 10th Gurkha Rifles at Simmanggang. Base 3 Wirhlwind mk 10.
|230||Whirlwind||based UK detached to various airfields including Labuan.|
|249||Canberra B.6||Detachment at Kauntan from Akrotiri, 5/1965 to 8/1965.|
|390 Maintenance Unit Seletar||Seletar, Attached to RAF Kuching as part of Mobile Air Operation Team. (MOAT)1964.|
|RAF Detachment Labuan||Arrived Labuan early in 1963 billeted alongside airfield at Labuan- about 30 staff in total.Provided initial air-ground communications for airfield plus longer range MF and secure HF comms to units in field. There was a rapid build up of guys over the next few months...2/7/10 Gurkha rifles,plus lots more RAF guys. Lost main generator in bush fire at this time. Ran systems on small Petbow units where possible. Billet moved to Membedhai. Twin pins, single pins, on site plus Beverleys. Recall a Varsity or Valleta (52 Sqdn ??)at airfield. No fighters at first but ultimately Hunters, Javelins. Shackletons from 205sqdn did long sorties. Joined them as supernumery crew several times. Aussies had Sabres I think. Army chaplain killed in Auster. Belvederes about though not too reliable - gearbox plus airframe probs. Navy were flying early Wessex. Some Gurkhas casevaced during this time. Radar turned up about Dec'63 and installed on HF tr ansmitter site behind ammo-dump far side of airfield. Migs buzzed Beverleys over mainland so we manned airfield Oelis during downtime. Met 'Ging' Lacey early 64. Took it in turns servicing GR10 radio packs at frontline sites, Bario Sepulot, Tawau,(hovercraft in use here) Long Adah etc etc for Gurkha patrols. Army signals unit arrived under a Major McCready(?) and joint high power TXers installed to N of airfield. Had two very wet/cold SBS/SAS guys turned up one night having run a boat onto a reef close by. Hunter had flame out on take off - pilot ejected but died. Dennis Healey flew in for visit. Build up continued apace. Recall 31COY (RCT?)plus lots of guys from Seletar, Tengha and Changi. MO was a Sqdn Ldr Camm I think. Left in summer 1964.|
|RAF Detachment Brunei||Posted from Labuan, this detachment comprised of Tower Control, Crash crew and FATOC.|
|15 Squadron Royal Air Force Regiment||Based at RAF Changi and then RAF Seletar, detachments included, Labuan, Brunei, Kuching, Pensiangan and numerous other jungle strips. Flight commander was Flying Officer Theed, squadron adj. F/lt Fairweather
Based at R.A.F. Changi and Seletar. OC Sqn.Ldr.Hardy. Continuous detachments to Borneo,i.e. Sepulot Sarawak, Tawau area, and later Gundong Gading. in support of Helicopter and other R.A.F. activities.
Other wise in Malay Penninsular, Flt. Cdr. Fg. Off. T.A.M. Fowler. Thanks to Peter Wadman for this second entry.
SAC Bradbury C/O Sqdn Ldr B.P.Cootes Detachments-Thailand,North Borneo, Gan. 1962-64 Raf Rgt Changi.
|26 Independant LAA Squadron, Royal Air Force Regiment||Deployed from RAF Nicosia, Cyprus, mid February 1964 to Changi. Co-located with 15 Field Sqn, RAF Regiment at Telok Paku. Commanding Officer, Sqn Ldr Ledlie. Deployed with 53 (Louisburg) Bty of 22 Light Air Defence Regiment, 30 Battery and 32 Battery of 16 Light Air Defence Regiment Royal Artillery in defence of RAF Changi.|
|54 Signals Unit||Mobile Signals Unit based Seletar with detachments to Labuan, Hong Kong and throughout the Malay Peninsular. Formed in March 1964, first C.O. was Flt. L A Bull who remained for two and a half years being replaced by Flt.Lt N Le Dieu.
At least six of the original founder members served with the unit until March 1968 having had their tour extended by 18 months. Unit moved to the UK circa 1969.
First Flight Sergeant NCO i/c Unit (J.C. Boyd)awarded BEM in 1968 New Years Honours List. Thanks to Chris Boyd for this entry.
|Detachment 63 LAA squadron, RAF Regiment||RAF TAWAU Guarding airstrip using Oerlikons on plinths and ground defence training of RAF Personnel on detachment. From July 1964 till Sept 1965.|
|Re-Force (RAF) 6158 NOVEMBER (1965) Kuantan||Reforce comprised of about 120 RAF Personnel from Raf units throughout the UK. All personnel from the UK were on 24-Hour emergency standby. The detachment no. was 6158NOV.|
|5001 Squadron RAF Airfield Construction||Stationed at Kuching Airport 1962 on 6 month detachment to construct landing strip. and helicopter pads for incoming " Albian" force. Officer in charge of unit was Warrant Officer Greene. The unit was guarded by The Queens Royal Irish Hussars and a small force of Sarawak Rangers. based at Tawau, Sabah mid to late 1965. Accommodated at Camp Glenn, next to Tawau airfield. Not long afterwards (1965?), these units were incorporated into the Royal Engineers.|
|Air Portable Communications Element (RAF)||APCE operated from Seletar, it was attached to Group headquarters. The element setup and ran Radio and Radar for temporary airfields, such as Kuching, Gong Kedak. It also ran BASO Brigade Air Support Officer, mostly from a Landrover. On Kuching APCE had the Cossor 787 airfield radar, right next to the fence and across from the Javelin fighter. APCE also deployed mobile Eureka beacons. Many Thanks to Rodney Westbury for this entry.|
|129 Signals Unit, RAF||RAF Labuan 129 signals unit, "Ginger" Lacy ex Battle of Britain ace., Jan 64 to Dec 64|
|425 Signals Unit, RAF||RAF Labuan Dec 1964, relocated from RAF El Adem.Ground Radar. Transmitter element relocated to RAF Episkopi/Akrotiri 1965.|
|487 Signals Unit, RAF||Mobile Radar Unit Type 13&14.rotors.midway of runway domestic side. C.O. Ft.Lt.Donnelly, Sig.Off.Patterson I was there Jan 65 to Feb 66 remember lots of Ghurkas and SAS 3rd Greenjackets were the garrison regiment.Fondly remember The Palm Grove and The Market Girls.|
|Mobile Air Operations Team|
|RAF Police||Under the command of the Provost Marshall, Far East, police and police dog handlers served on Labuan, Tawau, Kuching. There were stations at Labuan and at Tawau.|
|Emergency Standby detachement||Flown from UK to Paya Lebur in July 1965.'Arrived'at RAF Tengah and then flown up country to RAF Kuantan, Pahang, Malaya ( now Malaysia ) in a Bristol Freighter ( Shaker ). Detachment at Kuantan was for 3 months and then returned to the UK in November 1965. Employed at RAF Kuantan in GRSF, main duties were to refuel the airfield comms gear. Memories include chatting up the birds in the Nanyang bar in Kuantan town, Tiger beer, egg banchows and swimming in the South China Sea after being transported down to the beach in a Bedford 3 tonner. Happy Days for an 18 year old SAC GWM (C)!!
Thanks to Brian Whitby for this entry.
|RAF Air Traffic Control||Kuching Airport 65-66, detachments to Sibu, Simanggang, Bintulu and Kapit. C.O. Sq.Ldr Brotherton|
|Mobile Air Operations Team||Detached from Seletar 1964 and compprising of FLT Mike Eggeleton and one fitter (Fred ?) and myself - MAOT proformed a number of sorties in support of 40 and 42 commando - the 5th Royal Malay Regiment and the Gurkas the tour was for three months providing helicoptor/landrover communications support. Thanks to Mike Newson for this entry.|
|RAF Tawau||The self contained RAF Tawau unit was housed under canvas near the "airport". It consisted of about 40 personnel maintaining communications,logistical support, local operations and had 2 whirlwind helicopters and an army beaver "spotter' aircraft. I was one of two electrical fitters. Thanks to Colin Rose for this entry.|
|Visiting Aircraft Servicing Flight||Kuantan|
HQ DOBOPS (Director of Borneo Operations). Initially based in Brunei, later moved to Labuan.
HQ DOBOPS Intelligence Section
Central Brigade HQ. Based on HQ 51 Gurkha Infantry Brigade, located in Brunei. Its tactical area of responsibility (TAOR) was the Interior Residency of Sabah, and 4th and 5th Divisions of Sarawak.
Headquarters 17 Div/Land Forces Borneo, Based on Labuan. In 64-65 I was a staff clerk in the RASC but was transferred to RAOC in July 65. Lt Col Farrar-Hockley (now General Sir)was there during that period.
1st Bn Scots Guards (with 9 Company, Irish Guards under command - 9 Company also included a platoon made up of Coldstream Guards). Arrived Terendak Malaya September 1964, returned to UK Edinburgh February 1967.
1st Bn King's Own Scottish Borderers, from UK 1965.
1st Bn Queen's Own Highlanders, Arrived Singapore April 1961. Deployed to Seria, Brunei on 8 December 1962 by air and HMS Cavalier to quell revolt. Deployed to Borneo May 1963.
1st Bn Gordon Highlanders, From UK January 1965. Returned to UK February 1966.
1st Bn Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders. From Edinburgh,UK 1964. Based in Selarang Barracks, Singapore. Deployed on first tour to Borneo early 64 - September 64 in 4th Division (Belait and Tutong areas), second tour February-May 65 Balai Ringin, Gunong Gajah and Plaman Mapu, third tour November 65- April 66 Serian, Pang Amo and Plaman Mapu. Returned to Seaton Barracks, Plymouth UK in November 1966.
532 Signal troop 532 Signal Troop comprising 1 Sgt 1 Cpl Radio Op, 1 Cpl Electrician Driver, 2 L/Cpl Radio Tech Light, 4 Radio Ops.
Attached 1st Bn Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders Selerang Barracks Changi Singapore, and completed all tours of Borneo 1964/66 with the Battalion. HQ'd at Miri, Lundu (landed by landing craft from LST Gallahad)and finally Serian. Mainly rear link duties, under duress some forward duties.
Spent about 5 to 6 weeks on standby with Royal Green Jackets at Penang whilst waiting for 1A&SH to arrive Singapore. Troop formed at Nee Soon Singapore with 248 Ghurka Signals 1964. Thanks to Barry Longden for this entry.
1st Bn Queen's Own Buffs (Royal Kent Regiment), Deployed July 1966 from Hong Kong. Borneo tour July 1966 (Sebakang).
1st Bn Royal Warwickshire Fusiliers, Deployed at end of campaign 1966.
1st Bn Royal Leicestershire Regiment, Deployed 1963.
1st Bn Royal Hampshire Regiment, Deployed from June 1966.
1st Bn Royal Ulster Rifles, From UK 1964. Returned to UK.
1st Bn King's Own Yorkshire Light Infantry, Based Terendak, Malaya. Borneo tours January 1963 to April 1963 and December 1963 to April 1964.
1st Bn Durham Light Infantry, From Hong Kong June 1963. Returned to UK June 66.
Bali Ringin. Headquarters. Plaman Mapu b/coy.
1st Bn Green Jackets (43/52), Based Penang, Malaysia from Spring 1962.Deployed from Singapore aboard HMS Tiger to Brunei. Action at Miri. Returned to Penang April 1963.
1 Green Jackets under the command of Lt.Col J Sweeney [ earlier of Pegasus Bridge fame] at Miri on 12 Dec 1963. This was at the time of the Brunei Revolt. The revolt started on, I believe 8th Decemember. The first tour of duty lasted until late March.[ Returned to Penang]Date ?
The second operational tour took place under the command of Lt.Col David House[Later Lt. General] between 12 August 1963- 17 December 1963.
The final tour was from 25 May 1964 until 26 October 1964[ Same C.O.]
The battalion returned to the UK on 28 January 1965, having been relieved by 2nd Battalion The Green Jackets Brigade [KRRC].
Thanks to Merv Sprague for this entry.
2 Green Jackets (Kings Royal Rifle Corps)/2 Bn The Royal Green Jackets wef 1/1/1966 CO Lt Col E Bramall ( later Field Marshal The Lord Bramall KG,GCB,OBE,MC Chief of the Defence Staff)
Based Minden Barracks Penang. First operational Borneo tour in West Brigade (99 Gurkha Infantry Brigade)area in First Division of Sarawak.Deployed Semengo camp,Kuching airport,Padawan,Pang Tebang, Tringgus,Sapit and Tepoi. Cross border opertions.Took part in Operation "Hammer" the resettlement of locals into secure kampongs between Milestones 15-24 of the main Kuching road following attacks by insurgents.Returned to Penang September 1965. Second Borneo tour early 1966 to Tawau area of Sabah.Deployed Kalabakan,Tawau,Seradong Ulu,Seradong Laut.Returned to Penang June 66.
3rd Bn Green Jackets (RB), Borneo 1965.
B company, Kuki, Majr Ramsbottom, tour 3 months
512 signal troop (battalion rear link)
Attached 3 Royal Green Jackets, in west brigade, Sarawak, June 1965 to Jan 1966 Battalion HQ in Balaai Ringinn, with company bases at Gunan Gajak and Nibong Battalion commanded by:- Lt Col. HMG Bond.
2nd Bn Parachute Regiment, From UK. Borneo tour Dec 64- June 65. Action at Plaman Mapu. Returned to UK August 1965.
3rd Bn Parachute Regiment, D Company Borneo tour Jan - June 1966.
1st Bn South Wales Borderers (3 Platoons deployed at intervals during 1965/66 attached to other battalions while the SWB were based in Hong Kong).
10 Platoon, 'D' Company, 1st Bn South Wales Borderers (24t Regt) A platoon from Hong Kong based 1SWB - attached to 1DLI for the duration of their Borneo tour in 1965/6... Training in Sabah - company base at Bunan Gega but we also served at Plaman Mapu. I was platoon commander. Our platoon was the only unit (as far as I understand) during Confrontation, to be shelled by the Indonesians. This happened on a Claret operation on 11 March 1966. Thanks to Bryan Tichborne for this entry.
No 1 Guards Independent Company, Major JGH Head MBE, Major Sir NKL Nuttal. Deployed Borneo 1964. Two tours under SAS command. Later redesignated as G Squadron SAS.
22 Special Air Service Regiment
A Sqn deployed to Borneo. Tours Jan 63, August 63, July 64, May 65, Sep 65.
B Sqn deployed to Borneo December 64-Feb 65, July 1966
D Sqn deployed to Borneo Apr 63, Feb 65, May 65
51 Gurkha Infantry Brigade
99 Gurkha Infantry Brigade (West Brigade) stationed in Sarawak, CO Brigadier A.G. Patterson O.B.E. M.C. 1962-4, Brigadier W W (Bill) Cheyne DSO OBE 1964-1966.
1st Bn 2nd Gurkha Rifles, Was stationed in 5th Division Sarawak (including Ba Kelalan) in late 1965, handing over to 1st Bn 6th Gurkha Rifles in January 1966. Company Commander was Major J. Chapple (now Field Marshal Sir John Chapple).
2nd Bn 2nd Gurkha Rifles, Based Malaya. Borneo tours 1962, 1964.
1st Bn 6th Gurkha Rifles, Was stationed in 5th Division Sarawak (including Ba Kelalan) from January 1966, handing over to 1st Bn 7th Gurkha Rifles in June 1966. Company Commander was Major A. (Tony) Streather (on attachment from GLOSTERS) (Well-known Army mountaineer).
2nd Bn 6th Gurkha Rifles, Borneo tours 1962, 1964.
1st Bn 7th Gurkha Rifles, Was stationed in 5th Division Sarawak (including Ba Kelalan) in from June 1966 until end of Confrontation. Instrumental in the capture of Lt Sumbi and his band of Sukarelawan (Volunteers) - the unit that carried out the last incursion into Malaysian Borneo. Company Commander was a Major Jenkins.
2nd Bn 7th Gurkha Rifles, Borneo 1965 -66.
1st Bn 10th Gurkha Rifles, Borneo tours 1964, 1965.
2nd Bn 10th Gurkha Rifles, Borneo tours 1964, 1965.
In September 1965, L/Cpl Rambahadur Limbu was awarded the Victoria Cross for his bravery during operations in the "Bau district of Sarawak". The action actually occurred in Indonesian Kalimantan during the secret "Claret" operations.
Gurkha Independent Parachute Company, Raised 1 April 1963. Converted to SAS type company June 1964.
The Royal Malay Regiment
3rd Royal Malay Regiment, Deployed to Tawau.
5th Royal Malay Regiment, Deployed to First Division.
2 Troop attached to 4th Regt RA. The original 2 Troop served in Malaysia from August 1963 to January 1966. Terendak Camp - attached to 45 Field Regt RA. Approximately half the troop went to Borneo from May to December 1965 - Troop HQ was with 4 Regt HQ in Bau with a Green Archer section at Stass and Serekin fortified positions on the border - elements served under fire as radio relay stations with Gurkha patrols on forays against Indonesian CCO's (Clandestine Communist Organisations). Troop Commander - Lt H.H. Mews RA later to become OC Kings Troop RHA and eventually Prince Charles' equerry. The remainder of the Troop remained at Terendak - involved in preventative measures against Indonesian infiltrators.
2 Locating Troop, RA. Formed from 22 Locating Battery, 1st May 1963 based in the UK initially at Perham Down then at Larkhill. The Troop on it's second FARELF attachment was part of 6 Light Regt RA based at Terendak Camp Malacca. The troop comprised of 3 sections - met, radar and artillery intelligence. The tour of duty for the attachment to 6 Lt Regt was December 1965 - March 1968.
The Troop Commander was Capt K R Harding and the radar section officer was Lt. A.A. Windam. Shortly after arrival in FARELF the troop was attached for operations to 137 Java Lt Battery in Kuching and deployed it's 'green archer' radar at Tebedu alongside a section of 5.5" guns of 132 Battery (The Bengal Rocket Troop) of 6 Regt RA.
At the end of 'confrontation' the troop returned to Malcacca and the radar section prepared for an attachment to 18 Lt Regt RA in Hong Kong. The section sailed from Singapore with it's radars and other equipment on 27 December 1967 on the LSL Sir Bedevere.
Purpose of the operation was border watch with green archer radars. In February 1968 the troop returned to Malacca to prepare for end of tour. Many Thanks to Brian Harrison for the detailed entry.
3 Regiment Royal Horse Artillery (Locating Troop) 3 Locating Troop equipped with Green Archer mortar locating radar. Deployed to Borneo 1965-66.
3 Field Regiment, Royal Artillery Regiment was stationed at Tampin, Mmalaya with one battery stationed up in north Malaya near Ipoh.
4 Field Regiment, Royal Artillery. In 1963 a platoon (All volunteers) was raised from 4 Field Regiment, RA to strengthen the deployment of the Royal Leicester Regiment which was badly under strength. The platoon operated indepedently of the Royal Leicester's, and were based at SEPULOT airstrip. The Platoon carried out airstrip defence and jungle patrols, usually 10 man, 14 days. The Platoon deployed from Hong Kong for a tour of nine months, before returning to Hong Kong. Commanded by Lt/Col. Bob Lyons; Regiment took over from Australian Artillery Regt. 4th consisted of HQ. Bty, 88 (Arracan), 97 (Lawsons Company), 29 (Corunna)Btys. 29 and HQ. Bty. served in Kuching, 97 Bty. served with the Gordon Highlands at Kalabakan Sarwak. a sub-section fo 97 battery deployed to 5th Division, Sarawak, supporting 1/2 GR at Ba Kelalan and later 1/6 GR. Equipped with Italian 105mm Pack Howitzer M56. The GPO was WO2 (BSM) Ron Baynes and the Gun No.1 was a Sgt Chris Beck. 88 Bty was split up all over Borneo. Initial training and acclimatisation took place in Tarandak camp Malaca Malaya.
Air Troop, 4 Light Regiment, Royal Artillery. The Air Troop 4 Light Regt. R.A. formed under Capt. L.C. Bond in June 1965 at Kluang, Malaya with 3 Sioux helicopters and sailed to Kuching on the LST Reginald Kerr. Transferred from mid-river upstream to Kuching by LCV because of capsized vessel at the Kuching dock. Initially based at the Batu Kitang waterworks along with the REME LAD. Later in the year moved into the more secure Semengo Camp. The pilots and technicians exchanged posts with those from 49 Regt. R.A. (Hong Kong)in late December. Thanks to Dickie Dawes for this entry.
6th Light Regiment, Royal Artillery based in Terendak camp, Malacca. 6 x 105 Howitzers to cover border areas. Tour of Malaysia was from January 1966 to April 1968. H(Ramsay's Troop)Bty, V Bty equipped with 105mm howitzers. 132 (Bengal Rocket Troop)Bty equipped with 5.5" guns. V Bty deployed in Bau and Lundu areas 1966.
12 Light Air Defence Regt: 9 (Plassey)Bty and T(Shah Sujah's Troop)Bty rotated between Tampin (Malay Peninsula) and Borneo. Deployed to Borneo. Equipped with L40/70 Bofors and FCE7 radars. Returned to UK 1966.
Acc att. reme wksps of above from dec 1962 to nov. 1966
16 Light Air Defence Regt: Commanded by Lt Col HD Way. Deployed from BAOR in March 1965 for 30 month tour of Singapore and Borneo. 30 (Rogers's Company) Bty, commanded by Major Bell, 32(Minden) Bty, commanded by Major Arend, each carried out two operational tours at RAF Changi, Singapore and RAF Kuching, Borneo. Equipped with L40/70 Bofors and FCE7 radars. 4.2" Mortar crews who were deployed on the border in Sarawak firstly at Padawen and later at Nibong. Returned to the UK in November 1966.
16th Light Air Defence Regiment RA LAD REME: REME LAD in Cyangi, Kuching Borneo & Singapore.
20 Medium Regiment RA, 12 (Minden)Bty, 43 (Lloyd's Company) Bty. Based in Tampin, Malaysia. Equipped with 5.5" guns. Returned to UK 1963.
12 (Minden) Battery fled out to Kuching about 12th December 1962 and were based in the school at Bau some 8 miles south of Kuching. The Bty Commander was Major Walker RA. and the BSM was BSM Tony Wilcox. The abattery received both the old GSM (Brunei)and the 62 GSM (Borneo)because the GSM 62 replaced the old one two days after the battery arrived in Kuching. The battery's guns were left back in Tampin and the battery acted as infantry patrolling the Border. The battery left Kuching in (I believe) March 63. Thansk to David Williams for the 12 (Minden) Battery information.
22 Light Air Defence Regt: From BAOR . Based at Tampin, Malay Peninsula on short emergency tour to provide additional Short Range Air Support and Defence at RAF airfields, reinforcing RAF Regiment LAA squadrons. 42(Alem Hamza) Bty and 53 (Louisburg) Bty deployed to RAF Kuching. Equipped with L40/70 Bofors and FCE7 radars.
As a member of 53 Bty outside of Kuching, members of the Bty were deployed with 4.2 Mortars to Nibong in support of 'A' Company 2nd Battalion the Royal Green Jackets. Although the Para's run a book on how many bombs we could get out of the position, we fired four DFSOS in support. Thanks to Ron Watts for this entry.
42 Battery, in kuchung with 42.battry in h.sub was radar operator.
42 battery wksp REME 22 light Air defence regt RA 22 Lt Air Defence Regt deployed on 48 hour notice from Hubbelrath BAOR to Singapore in August 1963. 42 Bty provided airfield defence at RAF Seletar and 53 Battery at RAF Changi. In November 1963 42 Bty replaced a battery of 12 Regiment deployed around Kuching Airfield Borneo. There were considerable problems with the LA 40/70 guns which had been drawn from MOB stocks in Singapore, failure of the recuperator seals being a constant problem. The FCE Fire Control Radars and T.C. Radar 4 Mk 7 had been shipped out by sea from BAOR, these equipments suffered significant electronic problems with major failure rates of one per ten hours per equipment, cannibalisation was the order of the day with the nominated radar being rebuilt on a cyclic basis, this placed an enormous strain on the supporting REME battery section. A Matador Gun Tractor had to be commandered to tick over alongside the T.C. radar to provide air from it's compressor to pressure the waveguides - it did so for some nine months, full marks to Gardiners who built the engine. Subsequent investigation revealed many spare compressors were available in depots in England !. A Cpl vehicle mechanic died in Kuching suffering heart failure attempting to swing over a 27kva Meadows Generator.42 Bty returned to BAOR in May/June 1964.
To my knowledge, the only imminent action occured in the early hours when a missionary single engined aircraft penetrated a "guns free" zone from up country, the capability of the air defence system was never fully assessed. Thanks to Lewis Birt for this entry.
53 Battery, 22 LAA Regiment RA went to singapore in about 1965 advance party from germany. guns on changi beach. after that malaysia, Borneo, Tampin, used 7.62s in jungle. have had worse times and better times.net some good guys and a few bad ones
29 Commando Light Regiment RA 20 Bty, 79 (Kirkee)Bty and 145 (Maiwand) Bty.
Based in Singapore, Deployed to Borneo to provide artillery support to units in border areas.
Equipped with 105mm pack howitzers.
22 Locating Battery, RA. A Sound Ranging Troop (22 Locating Bty) left Larkhill December 65 and returned July 66. Deployed at Biarwak?,Stass. 7 Mile Bassar. Located with units from Royal Marines and Coy of the 2 or 7th Bn Royal Australian Regiment.
40 Field Regiment, RA. 38 (Seringapatam) Bty based at Bario, 129(Dragon) Bty and 137 (Java) Battery.
38 (Seringapatam) Lt Battery, Replaced 97 Bty (4 Field Regiment) supporting 1/6 GR and later 1/7 GR. Equipped with Italian 105mm Pack Howitzer M56. The GPO was WO2 (BSM) Curtiss and the Gun No.1 was a Sgt Deeves.
40th Light Regiment, Royal Artillery HQ battery, 3 miles outside Kuching June 65-June 66. Supporting 38 Bty, 129 Bty, 137 Bty & HQ Bty of 40 Fd Regt. in Pegiru and other forward locations. Based in 7 Mile Bazaar, Bau for short period. OC LAD Captain Shotton. AQMS Burford. AQMS Hancock.
45 Field Regiment RA
70 Bty CO Major J.B. Keenan, based at Kuching with A Troops at Lintang.
70 battery arrived in malaya in july 1963 in about sept we were taken to borneo it was called batu lintan and set a base up,A troop was sent to batu kitan while they set up the 105 howitzer it started raining and suddenly they were attacked.
116 Bty and 176 Bty equipped with 105mm Pack Howitzers.
170(Imjin)Bty, Medium guns (5.5) based near Bau where 12 Reg RA were stationed. We were backing 10 Reg Ghurkas and the Aussies with occasional fire for the S.A.S My C.O. was Lt Overton, BSM was SM Baker.
49 Field Regiment RA (Air Operations Troop)
94 Locating Regiment RA, (73(Sphinx) Bty)
95 Commando Light Regiment RA 7 (Sphinx) Bty, 8 (Alma) Bty , 148 (Meiktila) Bty. Based in Singapore.
Deployed to Borneo to provide artillery support to forward units in border areas. Equipped with 105mm pack howitzers. Both 8 (Alma) and 7 (Sphinx) batteries completed a tour in 1965-66. battery HQ was colocated at Bty HQ was colocated at Balai Ringin with the HQ of the Inf Bn being supported. Single gun detachments were forward with the infantry companies at Gunan Gajak, Plaman Mapu and Pang Amo. Due to roulement and boundary changes the batteries supported 1 RGJ, 1 DLI, I A&SH, 40 Cdo RM and 1 RNZIR. The Cdo Lt Btys were (for RA purposes) under command of the RA Regt in First division with HQ in Kuching, but for all practical purposes we worked with and for "our" infantry. 140 (Meiktila) Cdo AO Bty was represented in Borneo by a Naval Gunfire Support Forward Observation Team deployed with the Tawau Assault Group. Thasnk to Mike Jackson for this entry.
Headquarters 5 Infantry Brigade Signal Squadron (205 Signal Squadron). Departed UK (Tidworth Jellalabad Barracks) Autumn 1965 returned to Tidworth September 1966. OC 205 Sig Sqn at the time Major P.A.C. Baldwin. HQ located at Sibu adjacent to Airport in Sarwak 3rd Division. Believed the location was called "Airfield Camp"". RAF detachment at airfield were flying Scottish Aviation Single and Twin Pioneers also a detachment of Whirlwinds. 3 Flt AAC attached the time. During the early part of 1966 some members of HQ 5 Inf Bde were airlifted from Kuching to Sibu by New Zealand Airforce Bristol Freighter.
10 Signal Regiment
18 Signal Regiment at Princess Mary Barracks, Commanding Officer was Lieutenant Colonel W. W. Cock [R Signals], 1 Squadron Commander Captain J, A. Tonnison, Troop Commander lieutenant P. J. Brunton between 1964-1966.
19 Infantry Brigade Signal Squadron (Air Portable)
Ops Troop, 2 Sqn , 19 (Air Formation) Signal Regiment Ops Troop was based at RAF Seletar but deployed in late December 1962, initially to RAF Labuan, then to Brunei and later had a detachment in Kuching. The Troop Commander was 2Lt Rollo Rumford. The Troop provided telephone communications using 40 Line Field and Fortress Telephone Exchanges and Telephone Set J (Tele Js) for the deployed RAF detachments at these locations. During the first 6 weeks of the operation over 90 miles of D.10 cable was put down. Thanks to Rollo Rumford for this entry.
208 Commonwealth Signal Squadron, This unit was based at Terendak, Malacca. The unit comprised of approximately 60 % British and 40% Australian Signals Corps personnel. Commanders varied, one being major David Commerford (Royal Australian Signals). The unit provided communications support as required to the various units comprising 28 Commonwealth Brigade, and it's title later changed to HQ 28 Brigade Signal Squadron in 1967?. A Coast watching post was maintaing at Kuala Linggi, working jointly with No. 2 Fed Recce of the Malaysian Army. Detachments of personnel were sent to Borneo on 3-month tours, usually to Kuching. Units known to have been supported by 208 Commonwealth Signal Squadron are 40 Marine Commando, 1st Scots Guards, HQ 28 Brigade BMA, at least one Gurkha Infantry Regiment as well as providing VHF rebroadcasting support between groups, operating as an independent detachment. Thanks to John Darling for this entry.
237 Signal Squadron (Comcan) I and a staff sgt. were in Brunei Dec15th 1962 until feb 1963.We set up comms in a wagon alongside the school where we were billeted.Iwas a telemech based at Tanglin until 1964 and was at that time billeted at Amoy Quee. Thanks to R.J.Bowers for this entry.
249 (Farelf) Signal Squadron. Based at 18 Signal Regiment in Singapore (Princess Mary Barracks) and was actively involved in Brunei and Borneo for the entire period. Detachments from HF Troop and other Troops were deployed in Brunei, Labuan, Tawau, Kuching, Jesselton, and other locations. CO Major Webb. Major Walker, 1961-64. Thansk to Petr Ormefor the amendment to this entry.
621 Air Support Signal Troop ( 249 sig sqn) Singapore, I was in 249 sig sqn, attached to 1/10 Gurkha Rifles in Kalabakan. April 1963-sep63. I was a Forward Air Controller, controlling Helicopters (846 Sqn) from HMS Bulwark. 846 Sqn lost one Helicopter( Wessex Whirlwind) One Gurkha Soldier was lost.
266 Signal Squadron, 606 Troop became 266 Sig Sqn in late 1964. It later became JCUB. Thanks to Peter Drew for this entry.
511 Signal Troop, Attached 1st Battalion Scots Guards 1964/65. Terendak camp.only 11 in troop. Sarawak/Tawau on 3 mth. stints, part of Tawau assault group. Sailed on HMS Albion, exchanged with sailors from HMS Zest.
536 Signal Troop, Attached 1st Battalion Gordon Highlanders, From UK January 1965. To Hong Kong February 1966.
540 Signal Troop Attached to 1st Royal Green Jackets, followed by 2nd Royal Green Jackets based at Minden Barracks, Penang and accompanied both battalions on their Borneo tours.
543 Signal Troop 543 Signal Troop (Royal Signals), administered by 208 Signal Sqn, Terendak Camp, Malacca, was attached to 1 RNZIR. The troop provided comms back to Brigade & support for regimental comms functions. The troop accompanied 1RNZIR on the Pontian deployment, and the Balai Ringin Sarawak deployment during May - Oct 1966. Many Thanks to Lynn (Lee) Burgess for this entry.
545 Signal Troop 545 Signal Troop who were present in the theatre, both in Sabah and Serawak from early May to late September in 1966. The Troop was deployed with the advance party of the 1 Queens Own Buffs and moving to Serawak, located in Serian at Bn H.Q. There we worked alongside the Gurkha Signal Troop from 248 Gurkha Signal Sqn who were based in Kuching. On thier departure with the rear party of 2/10 Gurkha Regiment the Troop then provided comms both to forward units 1 QOB and to Bde in Kuching. Information supplied by Norman Horton.
602 Signal Troop 8 man detachments between 64 & 66. Base operatives for 22SAS at Labuan & Kuching. Field tours in Bareo & Kubaan. Col. Windgate-gray & Maj. John Slim CO & OC Sqn
606 Signal Troop, Stationed on Labuan from August 1963 to February 1964 then on to Brunei. 606 Signal Troop became Joint Communications Unit Borneo (JCUB) in 1965, Headquarters in Labuan with detachments in Sabah (Tawau) and in Sarawak (Kuching).
651 Signal Troop, located in Kuching.
248 Sqn Queens Gurkha Signals. Based in Kuching.
247 Sqn Queens Gurkha Signals. Ex UK/BAOR. Deployed to Brunei Feb 64. Based Bolkiah camp.
Royal Army Service Corps (became Royal Corps of Transport on 14/7/65):
3 Squadron, RCT 3 of us drivers from 3 sqn were on detatchment to the Royal Navy beach survey team. We were up in Sabah surveying the beaches. In charge was a Lt commander, Cantor was his name I beleive,, also a major R.E., a petty officer R.N., two full screws and us three.
3 Company Ipoh in 1962, moved to Terendak camp in Malacca in September 1964.
11 Air Supply Container Section
15 Air Despatch Regiment RCT 55 AD Squadron (formerly 55 Air Despatch Coy RASC) CO Major R. Wallis, 61 Squadron CO Major D. Garner, 69 AD Squadron, 130 Flight CO Major Riggall. Based at RAF Seletar.
20 LCT Regt, RASC, water transport unit. Portsmouth/Singapore Malaysia/N.Borneo.1964/1971.
32 Regiment RCT (24, 25, 46, 61 Squadrons) 46 Squadron was requipped with the LSTs Arromanches,Ardennes, Ajedabia.
Capt.Chris Beale RCT Sent back to UK ion compassionate Leave after about 3 months and I became C/O >2nd Lt Robert Boorman RCT.
A detached Troop from 32 Regiment RCT based at Labuan 1965/1966
Located between a Gurkha Dog Company and a Unit of the New Zealand SAS
Spent a year of supplying Australian Engineers with Beer and a little food and regular two weekly trips by Tank Landing Craft from 33 Regiment RCT to Jesselton( Now Kota Kinabulu) and convoying supplies to and Troops from the Jungle warfare Training centre at the Kinabalu Mountain in Sabah. We were also responsible for a Petrol point which was looked after by an RAF NCO and a REME repaire unit with a CSM atached to the expanded Troop I seem to recall that I had two sgts and about 40 drivers. Ther was also a RCT Capt who had been detached and posted to a town near the Indonesian boarder. Thanks to Robert W. Boorman for this entry.
33 Maritime Regiment RCT. 10 Port Squadron (formerly RE), 74/75 LCT Squadron, 37 Maritime Squadron.
10 Port Squadron served at Kuching, Labuan, Brunei and Singapore, supplying all forces in Borneo from 1962 onwards. There was a detachment on Tawua. Equipped with RPLs, Z Craft and some civilian landing craft. CO in Brunei was Captain Winscall. Skipper in Kuching was SSgt R Wright.
Detachment, 10 Port Squadron. Brunei town, customs house, O.C Capt. Kemp. I skippered "Nakhoda Manis" down to Kuala Belait to work for Shell, moving equipment upriver to Bukit Puan,hairy run that
46 Squadron RASC L.C.T. Arakan (4164) Capt. J.VENMORE
L.C.T. Antwerp (4074) Capt. M.RANDALL-SMITH
L.C.T's arrived May 1964. I was in Borneo from May 64 untill September 66. T/23874850 I.R.W.LENNIE R.A.S.C./R.C.T. Thanks to I.R.W. Lennie for this entry.
47 Air Despatch Company, A Platoon deployed from UK December 1962 to relieve platoon of 55 AD Company. Based RAF Seletar. CO Major D Cardle
50 Supply Depot Based at Labuan
61 Company, RCT with LAD REME. Station at Labuan and Commanding officer Lt Richard Gibbs.
69 Air Despatch Company, RASC detachment from 22 coy raf tangmere/47 coy raf colerne formed 69 coy (ad) coy first at raf seleta singapore then move to raf kuchin july 1965 jan 1966 co maj roberts csm devine cpls dixon devlin brown dvrs morrisroe,lawson, lang, McKay, McDonald, baker,some for the personel i remember. Thanks to ron copland for this entry.
71 Supply Depot RASC/RAOC 71 Supply Depot 1965 we were based in the shop houses just outside the port in Kuching issued rations to all units in Kuching area, plus supplied, by means of air drops retions to all forward bases in jungle. OC Capt Medowcroft. RASC. Unit was re-bageded in 1965, we then became 71 sup dep RAOC.
130 Flight, RCT based originally at Kluang, Malaya, then Seletar Singapore. bases in Tawau, Brunei, Sibu and Kuching. Operating under the command of Brigadier Harry Tuzzo. later to become General Sir Harry Tuzo.
142 Supply Platoon, RASC 142 Supply Platoon was part of 48 Supply Company RASC based in Bulford. 142 was sent to Labuan in 1963. Supplied rations to all troops in Labuan and Brunei plus air supplies to mainland Borneo. 4 Trucks of rations left Labuan every other day by RPL for the 4 hour sea/river crossing to Brunei. The 2 i/c was Lt Sag Simms.
Gurkha Transport Regiment 30 squadron, 31 squadron.
REME Attached 31 squadron Gurkha Transport Regiment Although small our REME Workshops accompanied the 31 GTR on deployment to Labuan and Kuching.In Kuching I personaly was involved in recce patroles, night APC recovery also escort to an LCT delivering fuel. During this time we had 2 REME Commanding Officers but I can only remember 1, Capt PW Gleave.
The Senior QGO was
Capt (QGO) Gopiram Gurung
Our main base camp was
Nee Soon Singapore ( Just up from Virgins Corner?)
RASC Supply Depot, Kuching. Rasc Supply Depot took over in 1964 from 42 commando in Kuching. Origanally due to go to Labuan on HMS Albion was changed Mid south china sea to sarawak by tramp Steamer. I was ACC attached and one of the First ACC out there in Sarawak. In Charge of Kitchen was Cpl Pete Amos also Pte Barry Ponsford and two others under the RASC messing officer. Thansk to Ian B. Read for this entry.
11 Independent Field Squadron, Royal Engineers. Terendak Malacca Malaysia.1963-1965.
3 Troop, 19 Topographic Squadron, RE(42 Survey Engineer Regt RE) served in 2nd Division, based at Simangang, fm 8.2.64-8.8.64. The squadron was responsible for mapping 2nd Division. 2/10 Gurkhas were also based there at the time. OC Captain Baker, S/sgt Wally Osborne was 2/ic. The RNZAF provided fixed wing air support alongside RAF helicopters. During this period the Gurkha Padre was shot down whilst returning from Kuching. There was also a further detachment also known as 3 Tp under Capt Newberry RE base at Sibu. Both detachments were of six month duration to support 1 & 2 Troops of 84 Survey.
32 Field Sqn. 1 Troop 32 Field Sqn, under Capt M. Stancombe and S/Sgt John Bond were first sent to Tebedu to build a road to the border, including a 60 foot bridge made from local timber. Then, on completion they were sent to Bau to build another road and a Bailey bridge. While there detachments were sent to provide Englineer support to other units. One group went to extend and modify the RM camp at Sematan. Thanks to Alan Watkins-Groves for this entry.
54 Corps Field Park Sqn. Members of Plant Increment, attached to 54 Corps Fld Prk Sqn RE worked throughout Sabah, Brunei and Sarawak from 1965 to 1966. Provided plant fitters to maintain and repair plant being used by British, Australian, Gurkha, and Malay Engineer units.
54 Corps Support Squadron RE 54 Field Squadron moved from Hong Kong to Singapore (Gillman Bks)in 1962 and became 54 Corps Support Squadron. At the start of the Brunei Rebellion in Nov 1962 a small detachment from the Squadron (Cpl Cliff-Matthews and about 6 sappers, myself included.)were sent to Brunei. We were initially based in the harbour complex and our main task was to requisition small boats to supplement existing assault boats. We then ferried front line troops and supplies along the river to areas such as Limbang.The rivers were in flood at the time making the journeys very difficult and we were also involved in moving many local people away from their flooded villages. We were later reinforced by more members of our unit and moved into a Primary School, where together with Gurkha Engineers we worked on returning the Brunei Town essential services back to normal. Thanks to Bill Stark for this entry.
59 Independent Field Regiment, based in Singapore and served on operation Crown and also patrolled in Malaya.
84 Survey Squadron, 1 Topo Troop based at Sibu & Nanga Gaat.Parent Unit in Singapore.Mapping Sarawak.
OC Lt R.Wood (later Major General D.Mil Svy). 1 & 2 Troops were in Borneo continuously from 1956 to 1967. Parent Unit OC Major R.Busk.
2 Troop was based in Sabah from September 1963 to July 1969 and then moved to Sarawak until September 1970 and then to Pontianak (Indonesia) for six months.
Many Thanks to Albert Ernest Field for the detailed information. He has a website at: http://albiefield.co.uk/ which contains more details of this unit.
Brunei Works Section, Royal Engineers
I was posted to the unit from Nov 63 to Nov 64 (and subsequently to 11 Indep Fd Sqn RE, Terendak). We were a small works unit responsible for medium and minor works and Repairs & Maintenance under the command of the DCRE, Major J. D. Townsend-Rose, MC, RE assisted by three WO2 Clerks of Works, a WO2 storeman supervisor, a CPL Draughtsman CPL Tony Stock Architecural, a CPL and LCPL Clerk (self)and Driver. One of the WO2 and the driver were detached to Seria. We were located in the Customs Building on the Brunei River and worked in co-operation with the Public Works Department (PWD) next door to 10 Port Sqn RE. CPL Frank Reid was in the Stmn position for part of that time and we both subsequently (and independently) emigrated to Australia and enlisted in the Royal Australian Engineers. Frank saw service in Vietnam and I served in Papua New Guinea for three years. Thanks to Adrian Rogers for this entry.
50 Gurkha Field Regt
69 Gurkha Independent Field Squadron
Engineer resources, Our Unit was based in Sekama road, Kuching. We supplied all Units with Engineer Material.In 1966 We were taken under 54 Field Pk Sqn R.E. I served their from 1965 to 1966.
Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers
Air Portable Section 2 Infantry REME Workshops The unit was dispatched from Terendak Camp without vehicles because of political agreements with the Malay Government which prevented the use of 28 Commenwealth Bde. against soveriegn countries in the area.We therefore had to pick up all our vehicles and equipment from Johore.We were then shipped by L.S.T. from Singapore to Kuching.The unit was based in the Water Works just outside town I think the time line was march to June 63.
8 Infantry REME Workshops Small support unit arrived Simangang early 1965 Base Simangang Servicing Softskins, outboard and other mechanical equipment( water pumps etc.) Near frontline support to Gurka company who were relieved by the New Zealand company. Thanks to Cpl. Michael James Hopton. for this entry.
9 Infantry Workshops and 10 Infantry Workshops. Both detachments operated independently One in Brunei (Bolkiah Camp) and the other in Labuan. In 1966 the workshop in Labuan was detached and was allocated the designation of 69 Stn Wksp to the end of the confrontation.
10 Infantry Workshops, Air Portable Detachment. it is my recollection that I was part of the 10Inf Air Portable Detachment which went to Labuan in Jan or Feb 1963. We went from Singapore on an LST (I think it was the Kittiwake. On arrival at Labuan we set up a tented camp on the Labuan PWD site (very small PWD!). This camp was on the road out of Labuan Town about halfway to the Commwealth War Grave. After a while (I don't remember how much later) we moved by sea again to Brunei Town. Our workshop was set up in the PWD Compound and we occupied half of the covered wksp area there. We were billeted just up the road from there in the SMJA School. Other units were billeted across the road from this school in the STRI School. I am not sure if these school initials are correct.During my time ther I visited up river to Bangar, Limbang, Batang Duri etc as well as Seria and Kuala Belait. I was a vehicle mechanic. I was sent out on one occassion with a Royal Engineers NCO to find and inspect the condition of abandoned PWD earth moving equipment. We went up the Belait river on our own initiative looking for equipment. I traveled into Sarawak up river from Brunei Town and also on the coast to Miri. I returned to Uk in January 1964. Thanks to Geoff Earnest for this entry.
10 Infantry Workshop REME Tanaputeh (White Earth) Kuching 10 Inf Workshop REME 1965-66 Commanded by Major McDougall. Based at Tanaputeh North of Kuching. The Workshop had a FRG Forward Repair Group at Simanggang. The QM Stores was based in the GTR Camp and was staffed by WOII Peter Miguel REME SSgt Tug Wilson RCT Cpl Bud Abbott REME and Dvr Andy Morrow RCT. The main accommnodation was above the Shophouses. The QM Stores was a corrigated metal building which supported the Gurkha Transport Regiment. Also in this area was the Sgts Mess for all the support groups. The senior member WOII Nick Nicholson RAOC a veteran of Dunkerque and still on active service in 1965 also the proprietor of the Saracen's Head in Thame. 10 Port Squadron RCT manned 2 RPLs (Ramp Powered Lighters) and RPL 04 Captained by a SSgt supplied the 42 RM Commando Unit on the Rajang River with Aviation Fuel. R&R could be taken in Singapore or Santabong an island off Kuching which still had the buildings of the Japanese HQ from WWII in pristine condition.
10 Inf Wksp REME Simanngang Sarawak 1965, Unit OC Major Duke, the unit was mostly concerned with the servicing and maintainence of the outboard motors for the British river longboats. Kiwi would love to make contact with Brit Wksp mates, Roger and co. I was detached to this unit from my parent unit 1st Bn RNZIR. Thanks to Colin (Archie) Andrews for this entry.
Mobile Servicing & Repair Detachment 75 Aircraft Wksp., REME was a detachment from the main wksp in Kluang, Jahore. The Unit was on Brunei airport, and serviced Army Beaver, Scout & Sioux aircraft. There was a small detachment on Kuching Airport, servicing Auster AOP aircraft. In July 1966 a number of us were posted to Kuching to form 78 Aircraft Workshop. Accommodated in a shophouse at Six and a Half Mile Bazaar, on the Serean Road,in the same compound as 137 Java Bty, 40 Light Regt. RA. The initial Parade as a Workshop about 3 weeks before the cessation of hostilities.
P.W.D. Inspection Team att. Det. 10 Inf. Wksp. Brunie Town. The team was raised in Jan 1963 to inspect and report on the condition of the P.W.D.earth moving equipment abandond by local P.W.D.staff at the start of the insurrection.
78 Aircraft Wksp. Kutching I joined from Singapore beginning of June. Had to set up all the ground gear and vehicles. As stated, Austers, Sioux and Scout choppers. Packed up end of Aug and by boat to Singapore then on to 75AC Kluang. Thanks to Roderic Kyle. REME L/Cpl for this entry.
Royal Military Police
5 Brigade Provost Unit
19 Brigade Provost Unit
16 Independent parachute brigade, pro unit RMP Jan 1965/July 1965 2Para Bn Gp with B Coy 2Para as section commanders CSM RMP was CSM HQ Coy 2Para I think there were about 7 or 8 Cpls RMP Att to 2Para at this time me bing one of them B Coy location at this time /Plamam mapu. Thanks to J Mccready for this entry.
Borneo Provost Section
51 Gurkha Infantry Brigade Provost Unit, Gurkha Military Police.
99 Gurkha Infantry Brigade Provost Unit, Gurkha Military Police. Stationed in Kuching, Sarawak.
Army Air Corps
2 Flight Army Air Corps locations, Sibu/Kapit, Kuching and finally Labuan.o.c.Major J.E.M.Elliot rRA. REME ic staff sergeant Brian Fowler. Operated Westland scout helicopters. Arrived Borneo 1966, left for Seremban 1966 on LSL Empire Gannet.
3 Flight Army Air Corps Advance party of the unit went out around November 1965.
3 Flight was attached to 5 Brigade Headquarters, based in Sibu. We had a number of detachments in the 3rd Division mainly at Kapit, where we operated a small airfield and at Nanga Gaat. The unit was about thirty strong. Having 6 pilots, commanded by Major. J. Cullens. 12 soldiers of the 16th/5th The Queen's Royal Lancers, as ground crew, responsible for Vehicles and Radio Operations. The rest being members of the REME, their Senior NCO was Staff Sgt Sanderson. Major Cullens was awarded the MBE and Sanderson the BEM. Thanks to Don McLean for this entry.
7 Recce Flight, 656 Lt A/C Sqn AAC 28th Commonwealth Bde Auster aircraft. Detachments to Fort Belaga to get a strip in action and act as aircraft control. There were various commonwelath pilots in this flight, Major Fleming QOH was one of the pilots. Lt Col Begbie was commanding officer of all flights in Malaya and Borneo. Many Thanks to Barry Sheppard for this entry.
OC 7 Flt AAC, Pat Davall, took over from Maj Jim Baimbridge in April 1966 and handed over to John Watts May 1967. 7 Flt alternated every 3 months with 14 Flt AAC (Maj Dicky Woodbridge) between Kuching and Terendak. The six pilots were a mix of Australian, New Zealand and British, Ground crew were a similar mix with Ghurka drivers also attached.
10 Flight Beaver and Scout aircraft. Deployed at Long Pa Sia
11 Flight Based at Kluang and Long Pa Sia
14 Flight Sioux helicopters. Operational and supply tasks
20 Flight Austers. Observation tasks.
656 Light Aircraft Squadron Deployed Brunei,Sarawak and Sabah 1962-66.
Army Catering Corps
Intelligence Corps, provided Int Sects to all Formation HQ, ran interrogation centres, and Field Intelligence Officer (FIO). All FIO's were administered by and belonged to 2 Intelligence Company.
Counter Intelligence Platoon (Malaya)
Counter Intelligence Platoon (Singapore)
2 Intelligence Platoon, 19 Airportable Brigade
5 Intelligence Platoon, 51 Gurkha Infantry Brigade(Central Brigade)
15 Intelligence Platoon, 5 Infantry Brigade(Mid-West Brigade)
21 Intelligence Platoon, 99 Gurkha Infantry Brigade(West Brigade)
20 Intelligence Platoon (can anyone confirm this units existence please.)
21 Intelligence Platoon, (reinforced by personnel from 19 and 22 Intelligence Platoons in Malaya) (formed Interrogation Centre in Brunei and HQ COMBRITFOR?)
22 Intelligence Platoon, 28 Commonwealth Brigade
2 Intelligence Company Commanding Officers were Capt G.D.Jenkins upto September 1965, Capt J.F.C. Althorp from August 1965 to October 1965 and then Capt K D Jago until the end of the confrontation. 2 Intelligence Company HQ was based on Labuan Island, it was responsible for G1 and G4 issues: pay, promotions, Part II Orders, and issue of AFG 1033 items of equipment, such as personal weapons and medical supplies.
Interrogation Team (operated wherever there were Indonesian PWs). It was commanded by 2ic 2int Coy, its personnel included INT CORPS, REME and RASC (all Indonesian speakers and trained interrogators).
Special Military Intelligence Unit.
Royal Army Medical Corps
8th Casualty Clearing Station. RAMC Kluang R S KUCHING 99BRG Attachments to 1/6 Ghurka Rifles Sematan. 9Coy Irish Guards Padawan. 1st Guards Ind Para Sibu. R A F Tawau Station Sick Quarters.1st Bn Scots Guards Tawau Assult Grp Wallace Bay Sebatik Island. Period from 1964-66. Thanks to Rod Oakley for this entry.
52 field surgical team RAMC based in kuching hospital.majors Ian Lister &Ray Briant were COs (and surgeons) while I was there 1964-65 as anaesthetist. Thanks to Jeffery Thomas for this entry.
15 Field Ambulance, R.A.M.C. Air Portable. From October 1965 till October 1966. The main base was at Ong Tang Swee Rd Kutching but individuals posted to various outposts along the border including Saba. I did a stint at a Heath centre in Kutching before going 'up country' to a camp Wong Padong 25 miles or so beyond Simanggang. The fist unit I was attatched to was the 4th Royal Tank Regiment who had just taken over from the Q.D.Gs., then with the Life Guards for the last 4 months. As well as providing medical cover to the units at base and on patrols, a lot of time was also given to treat the Iban in their villages and longhouses as 'Hearts and Minds'. Thanks to Eric Hamilton for this entry.
LAD attached to 15 Field Ambulance
16 Commonwealth Field Ambulance, Brunei uprising 1963, Brunei cottage hospital injured personel from Queens Own Highlanders, Gurkha and 42 commando. Kuching police barracks and kuching hospital, January 1964, recovering injured and dead returning bodies to UK.
A medic was permanently attached to the SF base, serving the Gurkha company, the RA detachment and the local populace when requested.
19 Field Ambulance, Detachment at Sibu Hospital 1965 commanded by Major Jones RAMC
23 Parachute Field Ambulance, Early January 1965 a platoon of 23PFA left Aldershot with 2Para flying to Singapore.We then went to Transit Camp at Neesoon.We attended jungle warfare school at Kototingi for about a month.We then sailed to Kuching.From here we went up country to an area called Sarawack.We were then split to the companys of 2Para and helicoptered into the various base camps in the jungle about 3000yds from the Indonesian border.The thre of us set up asmall medicl centre on camp and took it in turns to go on ambush and hearts and minds patrols. Thanks to Reg Collett for this entry.
52 fst ramc kuching general hospital, kuching 1964/1965. major Ian Lister.
Royal Army Ordnance Corps
1964 Brunei s/sgt ammo tech for 51 Gurkha Brigade. CO Maj, Peter Jolley, my predecessor was s/sgt Dicky Crossfield Offices in the school and accomodation in some unfinished flat. Airport camp building started late 64, lots of sabotage until Gurkhas took over guard duty then it got built very quickly, I left before it was finished. Thanks to Mike Sanders for this entry.
19 Ordnance Field Park (Air Portable) 19 OFP was part of the Colchester Based 19 Air Portable Brigade deployment to the Firs Division of Sarawak from Jan - Nov 1965. It was based in Tanah Puteh, Kuching, with a detachment in Simmanggang in the Second Division.
21 Air Maintenance Platoon the platoon deployed from RAF Seletar to Det 3 AASO Labuan on 18th December 1962 to carry out Heavy Drops during both the Brunei Rebellion and the Indonesian Confrontation. At that time Group Captain Williams (Stn Cdr of RAF Seletar) was Cdr COMBRITBOR. The CO of 3 AASO was Lt Col O"Reilly RASC, Maj Rolye was OC 55 (AD) Coy RASC and Capt Hoy (Maj Hoy after field promotion) was Platoon Commander 21 AMP RAOC. The Platoons main workhorse was that of 34Sqn RAF namely the Blackburn Beverley. Thanks to Neil Dick for this entry.
22 Air Maintenance Platoon
98 Ordnance Maintenance Park, Kuching
99 Ordnance Maintenance/Field Park, Labuan; also 99 Ghurka INF Brigade [West Bde] Tanah Puteh Camp Kuching
732 Stores Transit Platoon, RAOC, 732 Stores Transit Platoon was stationed at COD Bicester (16 Bn RAOC) In December 1962 we were deployed to Labuan via Singapore (3BOD RAOC) and served with 99 Ordnance Field Park. The platoon was still active when I returned to UK in Jule 1963.
RAOC Stores Section 9 Borneo Wksps Bolkiah Camp I was stationed in Brunei in 1965/66. I well remember spending my 21st birthday patrolling the perimeter of Bolkiah Camp and the airfield in a tropical rainstorm. I also remember serving with members of a TA Wksp who were serving with the regulars in Brunei and Aden. Ialso recall that we spent the night England won the World Cup sitting on a beach drinking Tiger and listening to the World Service of the BBC.
Royal Army Pay Corps
Royal Army Educational Corps
Queen Alexandra's Royal Army Nursing Corps
Royal Army Chaplains Dept
Joint Comms Unit Borneo (J.C.U.B.), Joint Comms Center (Army, Navy, Air Force) Situated in Labuan, Borneo. Was an experimental Com.Center with all three services working together. C.O. was a Royal Signals Major. Stationed there 1965-66.
Sigs det RAF COMMCEN. LABUAN,SABBAH,BORNEO. 1965-1966. JOINT FORCES LABUAN. ROYAL SIGNALS ROYAL NAVY. ROYAL AIR FORCE. C.O.LtCol Tony Boyle, Rsigs. duration 10months.
No2 Comcen Troop Joint Communications Unit (Borneo) was stationed in Kuching with 3 Commando Brigade rear HQ at the police headquarters. One of the commando officers was Captain Sir Stuart Pringle (later Commandant of the Royal Marines).
The following ships were in Borneo waters between 8 December 1962 and August 1966
HMS Ark Royal Ark Royal was on station, in Singapore or offshore Malaysia/Borneo,over many extended periods up to 1966.
HMS. Albion Based on Singapore 13 Dec 1962 - Feb 1964. Involved in Brunei Revolt & Borneo Confrontation from 13.12.1962 until Feb 1964
Commanding Officer: Captain (later Rear Admiral) Colin Duncan Madden CB LVO CBE DSC & Bar
HMS Centaur 9/1963-9/1965
HMS Theseus approx from Jan 1956 until Jun 1957--CO was Capt. Pizey--2ic was Cdr. B.C.G Place VC. Thanks to Patrick Halliday for this entry.
HMS Victorious operations in support of Malaysia.
HMS Lion Lion relieved Tiger in the Indian Ocean and was then based in Singapore from march till oct 1963 in all the fleet actions of that period.
Two incidents that the ship was involved in the Indonesian Confrontation directly was the handing over of what is now Sabah at what is now Kota Kinabulu with a squadron of ton class sweepers.
The second incident was Lion sailing up and down the Sunda Straits full of HE ammo at 26 knots refuelling and reammunitioning every third day after Sukarno had said he would blow up any RN warships from sailing in the Straits.
He was supposed to have two ex Soviet cruisers. Later we found that one of them blew up a boiler on flashing up to sail for the Straits.
HMS London. She was in the Far East 1965, arrived Singapore 18/2 departed Aug. Capt JC Bartosik (polish), awarded General Service Medal Clasp Malay Peninsula. Soccer team defeated Victorious 5-3 in China Fleet Cup. Thanks to Peter Parkinson for this entry.
HMS Tiger She shipped 40th Commando 1st and 5th Division from Singapore to Brunie in Decemebre 1962. I remember we missed out on a trip to the States to take them there. Also remember the pet monkey hi on 'Pussers' rum
HMS Aisne Aisne, a Battle class destroyer was employed on counter insurgency ops in the Mallaca Straits Sept 64-Dec 64 and again July 65-Dec 65.
HMS Carysfort Commission with the Far East Fleet from November 1959 to May 1962.
HMS Duchess Served on HMS Duchess D154 24th Escort Squadron Leader 1962-1964 based at Singapore, before handing the ship over to the RAN 1964, we were involved with the Borneo/Malaysion unsettlement, we carried Ghurka troops up the Kuchin river, patrolled the west and north coast of Borneo.
HMS Kent, 1963 Singapore Straits. Bombardment support and boat patrol using 45 foot launches. Radio Operator assistance for 45 Commando.
HMS Ajax HMS AJAX was Leader of 24th Escort Squadron.C.O. Captain The Rt Hon D P Seeley(now Lord Mottestone)1st lt Gerrard St-J Roden Buxton. Saw some action Dec 64 in Malacca Straights when 9/10 Kumpits were intercepted trying to land infiltrators off Port Swetenham. Skipper awarded M.I.D. Plenty of time on the gunline providing NGS off Tawau. All the 64/65 commish qualified for Borneo amd Malay Penninsular GSM.
HMS Crane sloop, far East commission 1957 to 1959
HMS Falmouth October 1966 Sandakan CDR I A Wright RN Borneo and Malaca Straits areas.
HMS Lincoln While operating out of Singapore, in December 1962, the frigate HMS Lincoln was deployed in support of military operations with the Gurkha Sappers & Rifles, & other British military units in Brunei & Sarawak. HMS Lincoln carried long boats on the quarter deck which were specially used along with the ships boats to run the Gurkhas up the shallow rivers. The Frigate also did patrols as Guardship at Tawau, Sipadan, and Kota Kinabula off Borneo in 1963. Some members of the Lincoln's ships company received the "Naval General Service Medal (Clasp Brunei) for operations in 1962 ashore with the Gurkha's. Then all the ships company received the General Service medal (Clasp Borneo) for patrols as Guardship at Tawau in 1963. Thanks to member of the ships company ME1 Fleming for this entry
HMS Loch Fada, HMS Loch Fada served in the Borneo Area from 1963 till 1966. During this time she did several tours of Tawau Guardship and also Wallace Bay where we used to anchor right on the Indonesian border. We used to see the Indonesian cruiser Sipidan ex russian sverdlov class steaming along belching out black smoke. The ships captain was Commander D Monsell Christmas 1965 was spent at Tawua. In a 18 month spell on board I visited Wallace bay and Tawau 3 times and Kuching twice. Many Thanks to Rick Matthews for the detailed information. size=-1>HMS Loch Killisport
HMS Loch Killisport Loch Killisport was out in the Borneo Confrontation as Captain F3. Captain M.Fell was our Commanding officer.
HMS Loch Lomond
HMS Londonderry Beira patrols and Malayasia Patrols, between August 1965 to December 1967. Co was Cmdr Anson or Hansen.
HMS Salisbury 1962-3 Borneo
HMS Whitby. Commander Weyms as Captain, Lt Commander Stevenson as first lieutenant. On station in Borneo 64 to 66.
HMS Zest This ship acted as guard ship at Tawau and replaced HMAS Duchess.
I served on HMS Zest (part of 24th Escort Sqdn) in the Malacca Straits and Borneo in 1964/5. The Captain of Zest was Commander Fiddian-Green.
HMS Houghton Leader of 6th Minesweeping squadron.
HMS Penston, based in Hong Kong 1963/64.
HMS Sheraton Singapore Based Oct 65 to Jan 67. Skipper Lt.Cdr Bass. Part of 6th MCM 1965-1967.
Seaward Defence Boats:
HMS Ickford. Recommissioned in Singapore approx 1966 and crewed from HMS Lincoln, the crew was all volunteer of 17 rating, a lieutenant as CO and a midshipman. The Seaward Defence Boat ran from the back of Singapore police station carrying out Singapore straits anti infiltration patrols and secondly taking out special service personnel to Tawau in Borneo, as deck cargo, including bringing back the wounded. HMS Ickford actually challenged and sank 1 Indonesian dug out containing several armed infiltrators from Surkano's army. The Ickford's armament was twin vickers machine guns amidships port/stbd. Bren guns on the bridge port/stbd and the crew were armed with Lanchesters. A 40mm bofor was mounted on the bow which could not be used because of the proximity of land in the Singapore straits and possible contravention of the Geneva Convention. Thanks to Peter Swann for this entry.
I was on HMS Camberford from 26/08/65 until 26/10/66. We all (ie HMS Telford and HMS Greatford as well,) were Seaward Defence Boats, and we operated from HM Dockyard in the Naval Base at Singapore at a berth, 4 deep at times adjacent to H.M.S.Mull of Kintyre. Therefore I spent 14 months on this little boat with a crew of approx 17 to 20. To my knowledge, we were all drafted independently from different ships and I don't remember any of us being volunteers from any particular ship. Camberford and Ickford spent the most time at sea and our armament was very similar. We had a single mounted 40mm bofor forward, Vickers machine guns in twin mountings at the bows behind a shield and bullet proof matting, also in twin mountings either side of the funnel just aft of the bridge, a single mounted short barrel bren gun mounted either side of the bridge, two 2" illumination rocket mountings just forward of the port and starboard vickers and a portable 2" mortar thrower just in front of the bofors. No one carried Lanchesters on board our boat, being a nightmare to fire and hit a target but we all had a personal weapon, eg mine was a lee enfield by choice, engine room had a smith and wesson each and a number of stirlings were issued to the crew. Ammunition was available ad. lib and we all helped refilling the pan magazines for the vickers. An average weeks patrol saw at least one contact a night and some night as many as three or four, all beit some were just logs, some were poor people trying to get across the straits, some were 'charlies' but some were very suspect. After disembaring the occupants we either shot up or blew up their boats. On a particularly long patropl we used to pop in to Singapore Telakayer Basin to replenish water but only stayed for enough time to have a shower on the old jap boat that was tied up there and have nip down the road for a pint before sailing again the same day. Thanks to Alan Marett for this entry.
Minesweeper Support vessel:
HMS HMS Barfoil
HMS Manxman I served on manxman from feb 1964 to aug 1966. We reglarly supported the mine-sweeper Ton class boats with fuel and other supplies, off north Borneo. We called ourselves "the grey Ghost of the Borneo coast". We were still a viable Minelayer , and actually laid dummy mines on exercise. I was awarded with the borneo GSM plus a clasp for the Singapore straits. I would like to hear from old shipmates from those days. They would know me as "muddy" Watters and i was a radio electrical mechanic. Thanks to Robert Watters for this entry.
HMS Woodbridge Haven
Fleet Depot Ship:
HMS Hartland Point I served on HMS.Hartland Point from 1963 to 1965 and as a Communication Rating (RO2G), We were "Loan Drafted" to several Minesweepers during the Confrontation.HMS Hartland Point was the fleet depot ship based in Singapore until it was replaced by HMS Triumph.
I had 2 loan drafts,one to HMS Chawton and one to HMS Wilkieston.On one of the trips we embarked a squad of Ghurka's in Kuching,took them along the coast and up a river to a border village.The tide went out and left us high and dry for the night.We heard later that the Ghurkas saw some action along the border.HMS Hartland Point loaned many of her crew to different ships during the time I served in her. Thanks to Bob Tacon for this entry.
7th Submarine Squadron (SM7)
SM 7 Depot ship HMS Medway
Submarines varied but in 1965/66 comprised :-
LST Reginald Kerr
HMS Camberford HMS Camberford was commisioned in 1965 around june 1965 with a volunteer crew from HMS Barossa alongside the Ickford Greatford and Tilford for duties in the Singapore Straits. Thanks to Alan Sutherland for this entry.
Naval Party Alpha This was an Electrical/Radio detachment from H.M.S. Mull of Kintyre under the command of Lt.(L) W.C.Edwards which flew into the Capital on the night of 8/9th.Dec.1962 with the 1/2 Gurkha Rifles and other Army detachments to ensure that the Power Station and Communications were maintained.We operated from the Power Station together with the Company of Gurkhas H.Q. until they left to pursue the insurgents.Finally we were withdrawn and flew back to Singapore in a R.A.A.F.Hercules aircraft from Labuan. Thanks to J.A.T.Johnson for this entry.
Naval Party Kilo Naval Party Kilo was based in Kuching using a variety of small craft to run river patrols with sub units based at Lundu and Sematan. Crewed by a l/sea, mem/ a/b, and radio op with an attached marine policeman. Carried out patrols up to 5 miles out to sea. co and shore staff based in 99 Brigade HQ. Radio ops also manned forward radio stn at Tanjong Po lighthouse.
1st Signal Assault Team Borneo I was an LRO in the Royal Navy and in January 1965 was drafted to Sibu in Sarawak where myself, one other LRO [Mike Noonan]and three RO's formed a communications unit between Sibu and Nanga Gaat. The full team embarked on HMS Albion in september 1965 with 848 sqn on the squadrons redeployment to Labuan. Once onboard the team was split up some back to Singapore whilst Mike Noonan remained with the sqn together with 3 other ROs working between Labuan and Bario until early 1966. On a rotating basis we two LRO's operated from Nanga Gaat working with 845 NACS. [And of course our Iban allies] Our job in Nanga Gaat was to maintain communications with the helicopters transferring troops across the Indonesian border and also maintain secure communication contact between Nanga Gaat and Sibu. We were based there from January 1965 to September 1965 when we were relieved by an Army Signal Unit. Thanks to Jim Cook for this entry.
Thanks to Mike Noonan for the amendments.
Tawau Assault Group
SDML 3507 SDML 3507 was part of the Tawau Assault Group (Borneo/Sabah)in 1964. It was under the operational command of 42 Royal Marine Cdo. I was a Sub/Lt on board this Royal Malaysian Navy Vessel. I was awarded the GSM-Borneo for my svc. Thanks to Adrian Villanueva for this entry.
Fleet Air Arm:
845 Naval Air Squadron, Wessex helicopters. Embarked on board HMS Albion 1962-63 then Bulwark 1963-66. Deployed to Sibu and Nanga Gaat November 63-June 1965
846 Naval Air Squadron, Whirlwind helicopters. Embarked on board HMS Albion.
848 Naval Air Squadron, 848 NACS SQN landed ashore in Borneo and after an initial deployment to Kuching were stationed at RAF Labuan from where they flew daily in support of Commonwealth military units in Sabah and Sarawak. The squadron was attached to RAF Khormaksar to bridge the gap between the phasing out of the Belvedere and the arrival in Aden of the RAF's own Wessex helicopters. Many Thanks to M J B 'Mike' Rossetter for the detailed entry.
848 Squadron formed from 700V with Wessex mk5 sailed on HMS Albion for the Far East, various areas in Sarawak and Borneo.
849 Naval Air Squadron, Four Fairey Gannet AEW aircraft B flight from HMS Victorious, flying out of RAF Seletar. 1960-63 Bulwark 1964-66 Albion.
RFA Fort Charlotte
RFA Gold Ranger
RFA Wave Sovereign
Fleet Electronic Warfare Unit, Kranji Wireless Station Singapore. A small unit of Electronic Warfare operators working out of Kranji Wireless Station. Involved in joint operations in Sarawak and afloat.
The work involved monitoring duties and operating a variety of equipment.
Royal Navy Communications Fleet pool, Singapore, I was Radio Supervisor with the fleet pool and visited Brunei and Sarawak on many occasions for "one-off" jobs including setting up the forward radio station on tanjong po and had a hand in setting up the first joint services comcen in Brunei university in Dec 62. The Fleet pool also supplied communicators to Naval Party Kilo - many of which were still juniors.
Auby I travelled on HMS Auby from S'pore to Labuan in Nov 64. She was a Straits Shipping Company vessel ( Auby)that was chartered to your Dept of Tpt for carrying troops to and from S'pre/Borneo during the Malaya/Indonesian confrontation.. Her photo is here http://www.merchantnavyofficers.com/straits4.html. Thanks to Clem Foster for this entry.
Maxwell Brander L3024. LST managed by British India Steam Navigation (BI).
Empire Kittiwake L3510. LST managed by BI. December 1962 - 1965 RAMC served on the Empire Kittiwake, brunei cottage hospital and with 2/6 gurkha rifles as a member of 16 commonwealth field ambulance.
Empire Gannet L3006. LST managed by BI.
Sir Lancelot L3029 LST managed by BI, which brought 30 Bty RA back from Borneo to Singapore.
3 Commando Brigade
HQ, 3 Commando Brigade, Kuching police compound.
3 Commando Brigade Intelligence Platoon (Mid-West Brigade & SBS). Capt Oakley commanded the Intelligance Section.
HQ 3rd Commando Band, 1965-67. Rowcroft lines barracks Singapore.
Commando Workshops HQ 3rd CDO BDE R.M, Served 1963/4 billeted at Kuching Water Board REME ranks attached from 10 INF. WKSPS OC CAPT CROOKS REME. Ranks detached for various duties.
3 Commando Brigade, Royal Marines Aircraft Detachment, Simanggang, 1st Division, Sarawak. Lt Ben Waldron RM Detachment CO Between late '64 and early '65.
No 40 RM Commando
Based in Singapore. 6 deployments to Borneo:
5th Division: December 62
1st Division: December 62-Jan 63, May-Jul 63, Oct 63-Feb 64, late 64 in Sabah, Jul 65- Nov 65
2nd Division: May - September 66
40 Cdo RM were deployed in Sabah July-October'64 and in Sarawak, 2nd Division from July-November '65. In Sabah the Cdo HQ was located at Kalabakan with three Troop locations along the Serudong River. In Sarawak the Cdo HQ was at Serian with Company locations at Pang Amo, Plaman Mapu and Kujang Sain(?). Lt Col John Taplin was CO in Sarawak. He had been the Corp's youngest Lt Col in WWII while serving in NW Europe. Major Richard (Dickie) Grant MC(?) was A Coy Cmdr(The Saints).
Recce Troop, 40 Commando RM, In July 1964 the newly formed Recce Troop,40 Commando RM ,under the command of Lt Guy Sheriden RM,(made up mainly from the exHeavy Weapons troop personnel) formed the Tawau Assault Group boat section, alongside 2 SBS. Patrolling on the mangrove swamp waterways was mainly done on converted leisure craft (manned by Malaysian Navy crew, and with the RMs under a corporal). These craft were called "Limas". There were several brushes with Indonesian Naval and Marine units.
No 42 RM Commando
With 621 Signals Troop (Air Support Signals Unit) attached in Limbang day after the Limbang raid then on to Kalabakan.
Based in Singapore. 5 deployments to Borneo:
5th Division: December 62- April 63
1st Division: Aug 63-October 63, feb-June 64, Dec 65- May 66 , Sabah: Dec 64- May 65
No. 2 & No. 6 SBS RM
No 2 Comcen Troop, Joint Communications Unit (Borneo), Unit based in police headquarters in Kuching Comprised Royal Signals, RAF, Navy and Gurkha Signals.
Joint Communications Unit Borneo, Labuan. I served at Jcub on a posting from Hqfeaf communications center at Raf Change for 1 year. Unfortunatly time has passed and I am unable to remember anynames. I was staffed woth members of the Royal Corps of Signals personel and the Royal Air Force communications personel.
No.14 Squadron RNZAF, Equipped with Canberras
No.36 Squadron RAAF, Flying C130 Herucles from 1964 to 1965, CO Wg Cdr Dave Hitchins based at Richmond NSW. Thanks to Jack Fordyce for this entry.
No.41 Squadron RNZAF, The squadron was based at Changi with four Bristol B170 Freighter aircraft. I served on the squadron from October 1964 until october 1966. During that time we flew regular flights (once or twice each week between Changi and Kuching)moving troops and equipment in and out of the area. From August 1965 until September 1966 the squadron maintained a one aircraft detachment at Kuching. The detachment operated air resupply on the border in the 1st and 2nd Divisions - supply dropping to most of the positions from Bau in the south to Jambu in the north. At the time I was a pilot and I flew on the first mission in 1965 and on the last one in 1966. In between times I flew a total of 168 supply drop sorties with a total of over 1 million pounds of supplies dropped. Overall I believe the the detachment would have flown over 500 sorties. We were regularly the subject of unfriendly attention from Indonesian ground forces and on at least one occasion our aircraft suffered significant damage. We were always held in some regard by the troops on the ground for our persistence in achieving supply in appalling weather and with surprising accuracy.
No.77? Squadron RAAF, Raaf Sqdn 77 were based at Butterworth and provided detachments to Changi and Labua. They flew Sabre fighters made under licence from the US. I have some excellent pictures of the aircraft at QRA near to our workplace at 2nd line servicing. This was close to the east end of the main runway and nearby Changi village. I was posted to Changi with 215 Sqdn RAF and worked on 2nd line maintenance.
1 Bn Royal New Zealand Infantry Regiment. Based Terendak, Malaysia November 61. commanded by Colonel R.M. Gurr, Borneo tours May-October 1965, May-September 1966. Second tour of 1 RNZIR to Borneo in 1966 was commanded by Lt Col Brian Poananga who was later to become Maj Gen, Army General staff, and later NZ High Commissioner to Papua New Guinea.
2 Battalion Royal Australian Regiment An advance party sent to Terendak July 1961, before the camp was completed but active. Our Commander was Lt Gen A.B.Stretton.
3 Battalion Royal Australian Regiment, Based at Terendak, Malaysia July 1963. Deployed to Borneo March- July 1965 in Bau area, 1st Division, Sarawak
4 Battalion Royal Australian Regiment, Based at Terendak, Malaysia September 1965. Deployed to Borneo April - August 1966. Departed from Kuching to Singapore in August or September 1966 aboard SS Auby. The ship was rumoured to have been raised after being sunk by the Japanese in world war II.
I was a 'medic' attached from 15 Field Ambulance RAMC to rRAR at Bokah camp in the Bau district from I think June to October 1966, they were normally based in Malacca and had recently returned from Vietnam. WE lost 4 men while I was there 1 on a border patrol was Vic Richards ex British Army on the Ria Ridge in an ambush which resulted in the enemy patrol being killed and another Aussie being shot in the right tricep with the AR 15 round passing around his rib cage and exiting via his right nipple. Bokah was often referred to as 'Fort Bokah' Thanks to Alan Wisely for this entry.
1st Ranger Squadron NZSAS 1 Ranger Squadron. Detachments deployed to Borneo Feb 65 (CO Major WJD Meldrum) and Oct 65 (CO Major RS Dearing). Departed Singapore (and Malaysia June 1966), via Nee Soon Transit Camp
(3 Det) under command of Major David Ogilvy. 3 Det arrived in January/Feb 1966 and departed in June 1966. 3 Det was based in Labuan.
SAS Regiment, Australia, 1 SAS Squadron deployed from Australia. Operated in Bau, Tebedu, Lundu, Stass, Serian, Balai Ringin areas of Sarawak 1st Division. Tour February-July 1965. Returned to Australia.
2 SAS Squadron deployed from Australia. Operated in Sapulot, Pensiangan, Long Pa Sia, Long Semado, Saliliran areas of Sarawak 5th Division and Sabah Interior Residency. Tour February-July 1966. Returned to Australia.
3rd Malaysian Brigade. Formed the HQ for East Brigade located at Tawau, Sabah. Its tactical area of responsibility (TAOR) was the Tawau and Sandakan (and possibly part of Interior) Residencies of Sabah. It had under command the following units:
3 Malaysian Infantry Brigade Intelligence Platoon. Intelligence personnel in Malaysian Army belonged to Kor Risek (Intelligence Corps).
British Battalion (HQ Kalabakan, with companies at Serudong Ulu, Serudong Laut), included The Gordon Highlanders and 1st Scots Guards at times.
Malaysian Battalion (HQ - Tawau)
Malaysian Battalion (HQ - Sebatik Island)
Tawau Assault Group (HQ - Wallace Bay), By 1965, this was a joint British Army/Malaysian Army/Malaysian Navy/Malaysian Police grouping under tactical command of HQ East Brigade (3rd Malaysian Brigade with HQ at Tawau).
Malaysian Armoured Car Squadron (Sandakan?)
Malaysian Artillery Battery (Sebatik Island, Serudong Ulu, Serudong Laut)
4 Sqn Malaysian Engineers Home base Taiping. Built the road from Tawau to Kalabakan and Extended the airfield at Bario in Sarawak 1966/67. Mixed British & Malaysian Officers and NCOs.
A Field Battery, Royal Australian Artillery. "A" Battery RAA was stationed at Terendak attached to 45 Lt Regt RA. Arrived Oct 1965 left Sept 1967. About January 1966, 6 Lt Regt RA replaced 45 Lt Regt RA .
102 Field Battery, Royal Australian Artillery. Attached to 45 Field Regiment RA at Terendak Garrison Malacca Malaysia during 1963 to 1965. Equipped with 105mm guns. Was the last Australian unit to leave Borneo in August 1965 after a 3 month tour. Returned to Terendak, Malaya on board the Landing vessel "Maxwell Brander". Many Thanks to Terry Walker for the detailed information.
A Battery, Royal Austrlian Artillery.
1 Field Squadron, Royal Australian Engineers.
2 Field Troop Royal Australian Engineers, 11 Independent Field Squadron, Royal Engineers. 2 Field Troop RAE was an Australian sub-unit of 11 Independent Field Squadron, RE as part of 28 Commonwealth Brigade based at Terendak. 2 Troop served alongside 3 RAR in Bau, Sarawak from March to July 1965. Squadron Commander was Major John Stevens, RE; Troop Commander Capt Alan Hodges; Troop Officer LT Barry Lennon. Troop was located at BAU in Sarawak from Jan 65 to Jun 65, Involved in engineering support for 3rd Bn RAR at Cambrai Camp in Bau. Returned to Terendak in July 1965. Many Thanks to Alan Hodges and B B Lennon for this entry.
4 Field Troop, Royal Australian Engineers. C.O. Capt Ray Johnson 2Ic Lt N.Griffiths. Troop was stationed at Kota Belud was responsible for construction of Double/Double bailey Bridge over Tempasuk River. From July1962/November1962 Were never awarded GSM Clasp BORNEO and should have been.
7 Field Squadron, Royal Australian Engineers.
21 Construction Squadron, Royal Australian Engineers. Borneo- Pandewan area-Maj.Stein o.c. Our unit was in Sabar and Sarawak in 19-65-66.
22 Construction Squadron, Royal Australian Engineers. 22 Construction (from its base in Western Australia) was the last of the Australian squadrons to work on the Sepulot - Pandewan - Tampussison road (approaching the Indonesian border). On station when "Konfrontasi" ended, remaining until November/December 1966, from memory. In addition to the RAEME Light Aid Detachment there were RA Sigs and Medical Corps attachments, as usual. Commanding officer was Maj Peter I. Pell (retired and living on the Queensland Gold Coast, last I heard), 2IC Capt G.K. (Chris) Tampi. The squadron has since been disbanded. Thanks to Stephen Sheen for this entry.
22 const sqn rae and a sig troop were in Sabah north borneo in 1966. Base camp was Pandawan. CO was Maj Pell. Duration of tour was June to Dec 1966. 22 const sqn was the last Unit in Sabah.
23 Construction Squadron, Royal Australian Engineers.
24 Construction Squadron, Royal Australian Engineers. As part of 3 Company RASC 7 Drivers were attached to above unit who were building a road near Keningau Sabah N. Borneo to open up the remote villiges deep in the jungle during 1965 where I spent my 18th Birthday "Scouse".
32 Small Ship Squadron, Royal Australian Engineers. Landing Ships Medium AV1353 Harry Chauvel and AV1355 Vernon Sturdee were deployed to Borneo in 1964 during the Indonesian Confrontation. They assisted in the discharge of stores, equipment, plant and vehicles from HMAS Sydney (former aircraft carrier converted to a logistics supply vessel), and also performed other ship-to-shore, coastal and inland water operations as well as controlling the movement of cargo and vehicles by rail and water.
1 Bn Malaysia Rangers, formed from former Sarawak Rangers.
2 Bn Malaysia Rangers, recruited from Sabah.
3 Bn Malaysia Rangers.
All three of the above battalions were stationed initially at Sungei Patani (NW Malaya), then moved to Ipoh. In October 1965, deployed to Tawau/ Pulau Sebatik area of Sabah, Borneo until end of confrontation.
3rd Royal Malay Regiment, Deployed to Tawau area.
5th Royal Malay Regiment, Deployed to First Division Sarawak area.
8th Royal Malay Regiment based on Sebatik Island. On 11 September 1965, there was a contact between elements of 8th Battalion, Royal Malay Regiment (8 RMR) and Indonesian Marine (Korps Kommando -KKO) special forces unit (Kompi Intai Para Amphibi - KIPAM) on Sebatik Island.
693 Signal Troop [Royal Australian Signals] 693 Sig Tp [Royal Australian Signals] was detached from its parent Squadron 201 Sig Sqn [Royal Australian Signals]in Singapore. It was based on Labuan island and provided Signals Intelligence [SIGINT] to the Director of Borneo Operations [DOBOPS] during Confrontation.
Federation of Malaya Artillery(2 btys)
Federation Reconnaissance Regiment
Malayan Police Field Force
North Borneo Field Force
Sarawak Scouts Active in Sarawak 1965 68 Batangg Ai Area
Sarawak Police Field Force
Singapore Guard Regiment at Kuching
Singapore Infantry Regiment
Cross Border Scouts. Manned by personnel recruited from the Royal Malaysian Police Border Scouts. Also known as the Kuba'an Scouts by the local population. Operated with/or part of Commonwealth SAS Group.
HMS Hickleton(RNZN manned), Coastal minesweeper. Commanding officers were Lt/Cdr M.N. Waymouth, Lt/Cdr P.N. Wright then Lt/Cdr D.G. Bamfield. Lt Cdr Wright was awarded DSC following an action on 28 June 1966. AB C.K. Taylor was awarded a DSM. Paid off at Portsmouth on 9th December 1966.
HMAS Ibis A RAN Bird Class Mine Warfare Vessel [Also referred to as Bird (Ton) Class Minesweepers] No M1183 Ibis. Transferred from RN on 7 September 1962, ex HMS Singleton. Parent unit was 16 MCM Sqn RAN. The Guard Ship (RAN) in the East Brigade (Tawau) area. Served on board as part of an exchange programme between TAG and the Guard Ship.
HMNZS Otago, Attached to the Commonwealth Strategic Far East Fleet.
HMNZS Royalist, Attached to the Commonwealth Strategic Far East Fleet in 1965.
HMNZS Santon, Commissioned 10/4/1965, Lt L.J. Tempero then Lt/Cdr G Glyde. Paid off 8th November 1966 at Portsmouth.
HMNZS Taranaki, Attached to the Commonwealth Strategic Far East Fleet.
HMAS Vampire took over guardship duties from HMS Dido off Sipadan island on Monday 20th June 1966. During her time as guardship Vampire carried out 35 operational boarding at night in the approaches to Tawau, during daylight civil aid projects were carried out.Salakan Island (building of a jetty commenced by HMAS Derwent) Tanyong Labian in Darvel Bay (building of a schoolhouse commenced by HMNZS Taranaki) Larapan Island (construction of water tank) Medical team also landed to provide health care to the villagers during the building projects. Vampire turned over guardship duties to KD Hang Tuah on 13th July 1966. Thanks to Billy Bacon for this entry.
HMAS Vendetta She was transporting soldiers from Singapore to Kuchin Borneo during December 1962. Vedetta took part in the SEATO exercise Sea Devil that included the carriers Ark royal, Bennington and Melbourne that finished in Manila. Vendetta then proceeded to Japan, Guam, Manus Is arriving in Sydney21/6/62 for maintenance. This was followed by a visit to Noumea then in September Exercise Tuckerbox at Jervis Bay south of Sydney. Other ships included Melbourne, Vampire, Queenborough and HMS Caprice and Loch Killisport. In November Vendetta was in Freemantle for the Commonwealth Games then went into a four month refit. Thanks to Graeme Hanisch for this entry.
I was in Vendetta in 65/66 as a LSRP and later posted back as a PO but got made up to Chief and five months later went to the DE Swan and back to Singapore as Swan's deployment was the last under ANZUK. Thanks to Graeme Hanisch for this entry.
HMAS Yarra River Class Destroyer Escort. Onetime Guard Ship (RAN) in the East Brigade (Tawau) area. Yarra anchored off Tawau at 0800H Saturday 19th June 1965 and during the day took over as guardship from HMS Carysfort. Other ships in the area were HMS Houghton and Dufton RFA Gold Ranger KD Negri Sembilan and Melaka. Carysfort Departed for Singapore at 1900H Saturday 19th. Yarra handed over guardship duties to KD Hang Tuah on Tuesday 13th July 1965. Ships in the Tawau area at the beginning of the month were HMS Dufton who was relieved by HMS Lawton on Saturday 10th July and HMAS Teal RFA Gold Ranger KD Sri Melaka and KD Negri Sembilan who was relieved by the KD Sri Perak on Saturday 3rd July.
KD Hang Tuah
KD Negri Sembilan
KD Petrel. The HQ ship of TAG was previously the Governor of North Borneo's yacht, commissioned in the Royal Malaysian Navy (RMN) as KD Petrel. It was berthed alongside TAG HQ at Wallace Bay, Sebatik Island. TAG personnel were lucky enough to see films shown when made available on sane days.
KD Sri Melaka
KD Sri Perak