Hannah and I dropped in to say “Hi” to some of the guys of 33 Eng’ Reg’ after a training ride back in 2013. The bikes were kindly leant to us by SERCO for our 350 mile ride to Cornwall in the summer of 2013.
33 Engineer Regiment (EOD) was born out of the Royal Engineers’ Bomb Disposal companies, formed during the Second World War to deal with the mounting problem of German unexploded bombs. After the war these clearance companies were disbanded and responsibility for UK EOD were shared between the Territorial Army (TA) and the Regular Army, predominantly HQ(BD) Unit UK Royal Engineers. Formed in 1973, 33 Engineer Regiment (EOD) took over responsibility for UK EOD and is now one of two specialist Explosive Ordnance Disposal and specialist Advanced Search Regiments for the Corps of Royal Engineers. As such the Regiment is heavily committed to enduring operations in Afghanistan where it’s primary role is the finding and clearing of IEDs. The Regiment is hybrid, meaning it contains both regular and Territorial Army components.
The Regiment also maintains a significant commitment to UK Military Aid to the Civil Power (UK MACP) and has the responsibility for Explosive Ordnance Clearance (EOC) both in the UK via the EOC Group and overseas.
33 and 101 Engineering regiments are based at Carver Barracks in Wimbish, Essex and the majority of their work in recent years has been involved in IED detection and neutralization. The troops put their lives on the line to protect their colleagues along with civilians, and even with modern technology the nature of the work can never be risk free. That is where The Injured Soldiers Fund comes in. The fund is essential to bridge the gap between immediate requirement and the release of funding from larger charitable organisations. The fund also continues with follow up support and is coordinated by 33 Engineering Regiment themselves meaning no money donated gets spent on administration.
There is no substitute for the immediate, on your doorstep help, that such a fund can give to the families and soldiers. Comforting the families, making alterations to homes, these things need to happen straight away and that is what the ISF does. Who better to care with compassion than those who know that at some time in the future they may need the same services themselves.
Here’s a thought provoking statistic. During the British Forces most recent involvement in Afghanistan over 450 service men and women lost their lives, but over 5000 were mediacally evacuated back to the UK. As you can appreciate, minor injuries on tour would have been treated in Afghanistan until the patient was fit to resume their duties. Clearly the 5000+ would not have minor injuries and these soldiers and their families rarely, if ever, get mentioned. The troops may all be home now but the life changing injuries are just that. Please continue to give your support, thank you.