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The Guardhouse

A story from Paul Treen

Observations On The R.P.s
Do you remember the round concrete Emergency Water Tanks scattered around the camp? One day a group of us were looking into one of these near Imphal Platoon, after noticing an eel swimming round happily. We were discussing the finer points of this discovery - How did it get into the tank which was miles from the nearest river/sea etc. Whilst this intellectual conversation was going on, Lance Corporal Fagg snuck up on the blind side;
Fagg:  "OI! Wot the f*ckin' 'ell are you lot doin' by there?"
Nervous J/Gnr Treen:  "We're watching an eel in the tank Corporal!"
Fagg:  "Eel? Wots a f*ckin' eel? GET AWAY OUT OF MY SIGHT.."
Even the eel took fright and dived to the bottom of the tank.

Some more observations on those delightful RPs who made our lives a misery. Apparently there was another RP called Lance Bombardier Tweed. I don't recall the pleasure of meeting the gent but he is referred to by other comrades. On reflection I think that both of them were aptly named:
Tweed:  Very thick material from Scotland.
Fagg:  Slang for a thin white object harmful to your health.
Most lads would remember the so-called highlight of the week - the Saturday afternoon stroll into Towyn - after you'd made the grade in Tonfanau of course. To even get out of camp meant parading outside the guard room in civvies for inspection by the RPs. Not any old civvies mind. There was a Regimental dress code if I remember correctly - laid down as per Dunn & Company of Towyn or some similar modern tailor. The Welsh farmer look was probably "in" - flat cap tilted at a rakish angle, sports jacket and arse hanging out of trousers. Shouldn't really denigrate my fellow Taffs but they WERE different in North Wales.
Anyway, Fagg seemed to delight in this duty and we trembled under his stern gaze. Not the most handsome of men, with only two teeth (and brain cells to match). He turned away more lads than he let out. On reflection after finally reaching Towyn most of us probably wished he'd turned us back.
We can only hope he is now working for the Immigration Service at Dover and rejecting hundreds of asylum seekers for not having pressed their anoraks or not having their thumbs in line with the seams of their trousers.
Lance Corporal Fagg. The Royal Green Jackets loss was also AAJLRs...

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