April/May 2015

A Rhodesian Services Association Inc. publication
Registered under the 2005 Charities Act in New Zealand number CC25203
Registered as an Incorporated Society in New Zealand number 2055431

PO Box 13003, Tauranga 3141, New Zealand.
Web: www.rhodesianservices.org
Secretary’s e-mail thesecretary@rhodesianservices.org
Editor’s e-mail theeditor@rhodesianservices.org
Phone +64 7 576 9500 Fax +64 7 576 9501

To view all previous publications go to our Archives

Our financial membership is at a record level – 204 at the time of writing.

By all accounts there were record turnouts at ANZAC Day parades around New Zealand and Australia this year, the principal reason for this being the 100th year anniversary of the Gallipoli landings. However, it is my observation that there are growing attendances every year (weather dependent of course).

The lead up to ANZAC Day was a very busy time for our CQ Store with sales of our Kiwi Remembrance Poppy lapel pins going ballistic. Despite laying in extra stock we were sold out prior to ANZAC Day and had over 200 in back orders to our two main supporters – the Papakura RSA and the National Army Museum at Waiouru.

We even saw one of our Kiwi Remembrance Poppy lapel pins worn by a member of parliament on national TV.


ANZAC Day is always a time for people to brush off their jackets and berets and polish up their medals in preparation for attending a parade. Over the years there are a number of things that have caught my attention which I want to air in order that we can improve people’s knowledge and appearance in the future. Rhodesians have gone a long way towards gaining respect in their new countries by demonstrating that we were all part of a disciplined security force. As such, it is my view that when we are on parade we should present ourselves in a manner that we were trained for – a bit of spit and polish does no harm and goes a long way towards impressing people.

Along with this I would like to present to you what I call “medal etiquette”. Many of us never received our service medal(s) at a medal parade. Many of us probably only received our medals when we were no longer part of the Rhodesian Security Forces and so were not taught how to prepare or wear medals. So here are some points that I hope will assist you to better understand what is required and for you to pass on:

  1. We term the pinned metal bar on which medals are mounted a ‘brooch bar’.
  2. Officially sanctioned medals should be worn on the same bar. It is not a good look to see medals individually pinned on a jacket. However, in France there is a regulated number of medals that can be worn on each bar, but generally speaking all sanctioned awards and medals go on one bar which is called a ‘medal group’.
  3. Sanctioned awards and medals are issued by the Crown, governments, and in a few cases  medals awarded by sovereign recognised organisations such as the Royal Humane Society, St Johns and the Scout Movement, are also included.
  4. Medals are worn on the recipient’s left breast.
  5. Medals of a deceased immediate next of kin are worn on the right breast ‘in memorial’.
  6. You may only wear medals in memorial if you are directly related; for example, medals that have belonged to a great-grandparent, grandparent, father or mother, brother or sister, uncle or aunt.
  7. Only one set of medals should be worn in memorial. Wear your ancestor veteran’s medals with dignity and pride.
  8. Do not wear medals that you are not entitled to. It is illegal and disrespectful.
  9. The order of precedence in which medals are mounted is set by the country of residence. Order of precedence is a complex subject which is too detailed to cover adequately here.
  10. There are two mounting styles – swing and court. Basically, swing mounted medals swing freely; court mounted medals are affixed to a backing board and require more ribbon.
  11. When wearing medals present them in the best condition possible – you are on parade. Ask yourself: would your RSM have approved of dirty ribbons and tarnished medals? Would your deceased ancestor want his/her medals displayed in poor fashion?
  12. Full size medals should be worn during daylight hours.
  13. Miniature medals are designed to be worn after sundown, by both men and women, to make wearing them more practical and comfortable while in evening clothes. It is also acceptable to wear miniature medals in memorial where the weight of a full size group would be difficult for the wearer to manage and to avoid potential clothing damage.
  14. Wearing replica medals is to be encouraged in order to protect originals from loss or damage. It is also recognised that many Rhodesians did not collect their service medals and also that a lot of medals have been lost to theft and passage of time. Replicas can be purchased from this Association.
  15. Wearing a Poppy with medals - the Poppy should always be worn on the left lapel of a jacket/coat, or directly above any medals that are worn on the left side of the chest only. The Poppy may also be worn behind the hat badge of military headdress, if worn.
  16. Ribbon bars showing sections of ribbon of awarded medals should only be worn on uniform.

In recent years, much has been said in New Zealand and Australia as well as among the Rhodesian fraternity around the world, concerning the wearing of ‘unofficial medals’.

Unofficial medals are those that do not have government authorization to be worn – these are often referred to as ‘vanity’, ‘tin’ or ‘fake medals’.  These are created and produced in large numbers by ex-service and commercial organisations for profit to commemorate various military service actions or events.  Vanity medals are self-awarded and purchased. They are designed to ‘represent’ military service where no medal was given or warranted.

Unofficial medals have been around for a long time. As far as I know, in Rhodesia there were unofficial medals made at the end of the Matabele Rebellion, WWI, WWII and a Royal tour. They were produced as trinkets – collectors’ items, just like commemorative coins etc. They were not intended to be worn alongside awarded medals. I have never seen any of these medals being worn in medal groups from those times.

Post WWII Rhodesian commemorative medal

Around ten years ago a “Rhodesian Independence Commemorative Medal” was produced in England and made available for anyone who wanted to purchase it through the manufacturing company’s on-line website. It was clearly set out at the time of this medal’s planning and production that it was an unofficial medal and should not be worn with official medals.

“Rhodesian Independence Commemorative Medal”

Subsequently other Rhodesian linked organisations have manufactured other vanity medals. It is understood that the one pictured below signifies ANZAC parade attendance and “bars” are “awarded” every five years. Other Australian produced vanity medals were seen in abundance on photos from recent ANZAC Day parades around Australia.

The growing practice of wearing vanity medals alongside official medals by Rhodesian veterans is causing an unhealthy level of public criticism. Aside from debates on social media, questions are now being asked of me by an Australia/New Zealand group that monitors military imposters in relation to Rhodesians in Australia whose photos are appearing in the public domain wearing a mix of vanity and official medals. This is not healthy for us.

In my opinion it is quite unnecessary to try to keep up with the Joneses by adding vanity medals to your chest. Typically, Rhodesians who served for four years or less in the 1970’s have one or two service medals. The first is the Rhodesian General Service Medal (RGSM) which was initiated in 1969 and ‘awarded for service on operations undertaken for the purpose of combating terrorists or enemy incursions into Rhodesia’. The minimum required period of service for eligibility was 14 days. the second is the Zimbabwe Independence Medal (ZIM) which was initiated in 1980 and awarded to all forces in the country at the time of independence.

Rhodesian General Service Medal                    Zimbabwe Independence Medal

People who were awarded medals for bravery, good conduct and/or long service would have been made aware of their award by letter from the commanding officer of their unit or, if they were civilians, from the Rhodesian Government.

We should be satisfied with what we were awarded. There is no board of appeal and no Rhodesian Government to change anything now. Our grandfathers typically got two or three medals for serving through WWI, so why should we feel we need to wear more medals?

This is the official word on vanity medals in New Zealand:
While it is not against the law to wear vanity medals, the New Zealand Government has issued a specific Protocol for New Zealanders wearing honours and awards that is expected to be followed:

Order of Wear, Orders, Decorations and Medals in New Zealand – dated 1st April 2008 and signed by the Governor General:
Section 11 Part I – Awards issued by public and private organisations, other than those of the Order of St John and the Royal Humane Society of New Zealand, may not be worn, either with, below or on the right side, with official Orders, Decorations and Medals.
Section 11 Part II – Awards produced on a commercial basis may not be worn, either with, below or on the right side, with official Orders, Decorations and Medals.
(Source – Medals Reunited New Zealand)

I ask you to stop wearing vanity medals alongside official medals. It is not demonstrating that you are a proud Rhodesian. It is completely unnecessary.


Rhodesian Services Association Purpose & Web Links 

The Rhodesian Services Association Incorporated is an Incorporated Society as well as a Registered Charity under the New Zealand Charities Act 2005. The purpose of the Association is to provide benefit and education to the community. For detail and disclosure please refer to the opening page of our website www.rhodesianservices.org

This Association is committed to the preservation of Rhodesian military history. In order to do this we must build a museum and administrative centre. Land is available in Tauranga, New Zealand.

Our current financial membership is 204; we have over 2,000 newsletter subscribers and over 2,000 Facebook group members; we need a bigger percentage of people subscribing to the newsletter and following Facebook to commit to financial membership.

Where there is a will there is a way. We need your support in every way possible. We need business brains to guide us and we need energetic, driven people to work with us.

If we all put our shoulders to the wheel we can do this.

Here are a few things that you can do:

Ø  Become a financial member - we need a large percentage of our 2,000 plus listed subscribers to this newsletter, and the 1,900 plus members of our Facebook group to show their support and belief in our aspirations and make the small individual commitment of NZ$10 per annum (on current exchange rates approx. £5, US$7.50, R90) for financial membership. Email Assn Secretary, Chuck Osborne thesecretary@rhodesianservices.org for details.

Ø  Remember us in your Will.

Ø  Purchase from our CQ Store.

Ø  Encourage the younger generation and descendants of Rhodesians to become involved.

Ø  Introduce philanthropic investors to our cause.

Our Facebook group is at https://www.facebook.com/groups/152017521536350/ .  We have loaded a lot of photographs from various events, as well as others from our museum displays. We have found that Facebook is another platform assisting our purpose of preserving Rhodesian history.

Please use these links on our website www.rhodesianservices.org  for the following resources:
Guest Book
Guest Map
On line auctions

The Rhodesian Services Association holds a large Rhodesian flag for use at funerals.  Please contact me at thecqstore@rhodesianservices.org  to arrange delivery if required.

This from John Nilson in respect of his Dad Pete Nilson 1925-2015.
Dad served in WWII from 1943 to 1945 as an 18 year old. He saw service in Syria  in the first part before joining  The Scottish Paratroop Regiment as a sergeant.

He was then extracted and went on officer course where he passed out with the sword of honour as a 2nd Lieutenant. After his commission the war thankfully came to an end.

Pete Nilson was a great Rhodesian. He was a Beit Scholar, and a proud Prunitian from Plumtree School. He was a farmer, sportsman, hunter, entertainer, business man and politician. He was an active Police Reservist for 20 years.

His favourite sayings were “Faga Moto “ andHamba Kuhle” when he fare welled anyone.

Above all his dedication to his family, his farms, his influence on wildlife protection and his deep, deep pride in being Rhodesian will live in our memories for ever.

ANZAC Day, 25th April 2015
Hobsonville, Auckland, New Zealand
Since the 1980’s when the late David Turner first approached Hobsonville RSA, Rhodesians have been made welcome there. It is the point of focus for the Rhodesian Services Assn. on ANZAC Day. Over the years our numbers have grown with this year seeing record numbers of Rhodesians on the march and attending our service which we hold after the main service.

On account of the record numbers on the march we were put into five ranks instead of the usual three. Hobsonville RSA honours us by placing us directly behind the RSA veterans in order of march.

Front rank of the Rhodesians (in berets) L-R Paul Nes, Rob Bates, Russell Franklin, John Glynn (partially obscured), Hugh Bomford.
(Photo supplied by Peter van Dyk)

The Rhodesian Services Assn encourages participation by all Rhodesians on the march, civilians and services – we were all affected by our war and we all have something to remember and respect.

(Photo by Mike Boyd-Clark)

(Photo by Mike Boyd-Clark)

Bethany Scott-Donelan laid the Rhodesian Services Association wreath during the main service. Bethany’s family have a long and proud military history.

Bethany Scott-Donelan has just laid the Rhodesian Services Assn wreath. The importance of our younger generations clearly illustrated here with the Air Force Cadets and young onlookers in the foreground.
(Photo from John Pringle and family – with apologies for the quality of the photo but it was taken into direct sunlight which was great for the day but not for photos!)

This year we had around 120 attending the Rhodesian service which was run by Rob Bates.

Over the years our attendance has grown to the extent that we had to invest in an amplifier so that everyone can hear what is going on and we now have a portable lectern and Memorial Bell stand courtesy of Chuck Osborne.

The Rhodesian Service.
(Photo from John Pringle and family)

Bethany Scott-Donelan had earlier laid the Rhodesian Services Assn. wreath. Bethany was also asked to address the large crowd of Rhodesians. Bethany was an inspiration to all who attended and a credit to her family. She was accompanied by her Mum, Anne-Marie Scott-Donelan; her Dad, Leander Scott-Donelan, a reserve officer with the Royal New Zealand Navy, was at Gallipoli; her grandfather David was somewhere in the world on assignment training trackers and I am certain that her ancestors were looking down on her with pride this day.

Bethany and Anne-Marie Scott-Donelan. Hugh Bomford and George Walls with Bethany
(Photos from Anne-Marie Scott-Donelan)

This is Bethany’s speech:
Kia Ora and greetings to you all. My name is Bethany Scott-Donelan. It’s an honour to be here sharing this ANZAC Day with you all. I felt really privileged to be the person selected to lay the wreath at the ceremony earlier for the Rhodesian Services Association and to now share a little bit about my Rhodesian heritage. I am almost 9 years old and I am half Rhodesian and 100% Kiwi.

My Dad was born in Rhodesia and met and married my Mum here in New Zealand. Dad is an Officer in the Royal New Zealand Navy Naval Reserve and the reason he cannot be here today is because he is at Gallipoli working on the HMNZS Te Kaha filming a documentary for the Navy.

My Granddad is David Scott-Donelan and he served in the Rhodesian Special Forces for 20 years. He currently lives in America and works with the American and British military teaching them the skills of tracking.

Dad and Granddad’s family have a rich military history and members of the family have served in many major wars going right back to before the Crimean War in the 1850s. My great great great Grandad served with the British 44th Regiment of Foot and he received a number of awards for courage when fighting the Russians in the Crimea. After the war he married and had three sons, one of them was my Great Great Grandad James. He served in the First World War in the Queens Own Royal West Kent Regiment and was injured in Belgium and sent home. Sadly his brother, a Second Lieutenant William Donelan, was also killed just before the major Allied offensive on the 5th of April 1917.

Also in World War 1 my Great Great Great Uncle William’s Battalion, The Buffs, fought at the Battle of Delville Wood and served alongside the Rhodesians before moving on to Arras. At Arras he would have served shoulder to shoulder with Kiwis, Aussies and other Commonwealth soldiers. Many of those Kiwis would have fought at Gallipoli as part of the ANZACS and the reason we are here today.

Service in the military is not only on Dad’s side. My Mum’s granddad fought in World War 2 with the New Zealand Expeditionary force in the 27th Battalion. He fought first against the Italians then against the Nazi Germans.

At school we have been learning about the ANZACS. Our school has placed white crosses on our sports field and yesterday we had a parade and service to remember all those men and women who died fighting for us.

The Rhodesian and New Zealand military history is intertwined and our ancestors have a common connection, fighting for freedom against the evil empires who would rob us of our freedom and way of life. I am proud to be here today remembering my ancestors, I am proud of the ANZACS and I am proud to be a Kiwi.

Thank you.
Editor’s note – background research into some of Bethany’s ancestral military records was done with the assistance of Gerry van Tonder.

Memorial Bell in the center with L-R Chuck Osborne and Rob Bates
(Photo from John Pringle and family)

This is Rob Bates’ speech:
Good morning everyone, and welcome the 2015 ANZAC dedication and our own Rhodesian Services dedication.

It is a momentous occasion that you are a part of today. We are at the 100th Anniversary of the Gallipoli landings in April 1915. We are privileged to stand here and remember proud and brave people who seemed to know right from wrong who understood the word ‘honour’ even to their enemies across the lines.

Thanks in no small part to the ANZACs, we live in a peaceful, fair minded country like New Zealand. We pledge our loyalty to New Zealand. We thank the Hobsonville RSA for their kind gesture of hosting us again today.

This may seem a strange way to start, but there is a movie on at cinemas now - Woman in Gold. It is about the Nazi art thefts of the Second World War. Early on in the movie, Maria Altmann (played by Helen Mirren), when asked by her young lawyer why she is on this single minded mission for restitution of her family’s belongings, says to him:

“People forget you see, especially the young ones”

I know what she means – our own memories fade and if events are not passed down through the generations, people do forget. So today is very special because you are in the company of great, even great-great grandchildren of those who served in past wars, including the First World War, and so the legend is being passed down. Contrary to Altmann’s concerns, we and our young have not forgotten.

So it’s all about descendants today.

I would like to give special thanks to Bethany Scott-Donelan who laid the wreath for us today. Bethany’s dad Lea, a reserve officer in the New Zealand Navy was born in Rhodesia and is at Gallipoli today. Bethany has kindly offered to talk to you all today and I’ll ask her to come forward. Please give her a warm welcome.

At this point Bethany delivered her speech that is quoted above.

I am mindful of other young faces in the group today, amongst them – Savannah, Jasper and Petra Davison. They are: the grandchildren of our own Captain Denis Davison, 8RR, who served in the Rhodesian Bush War with distinction, being awarded the Military Forces Commendation (Operational); the great grandnieces and nephew of  2nd  Lt. Aylmer Knox Sparrow -  Signalman with the Special Boat Services of 1st Special Air Service Regiment, who died in November 1943 (it is thought due to wounds received during the Battle of Leros or Samos) and is commemorated at the Athens Memorial; the great-great grandchildren of Lt. Henry Hope Knox Sparrow who served in WWI.

For my part, my two daughters and my grandson Finn are here today.  The medals I am wearing are their great and great-great grandfather’s WWI medals - Private 9024 Robert Donaldson – Royal Highlanders (the Black Watch). “Bobbie” as we kids knew him, survived the War and settled in Rhodesia. He died in 1969. I remember him well.

And in November this year, I plan to visit the town of Arras in France on what was the Western Front. I will go there to see the grave of one Private 9212 Herbert William Fairweather of the 4th South African (Scottish) Regiment. He was my mother’s uncle who went from Kimberley to the War.

He died on 12 April 1917. The War Graves Commission record reads: “Killed in action, in the improvised and disastrous attack of the 9th (Scottish) Division (the 4th South African Regt. was attached) on the German positions in the East of Fampoux. The 4th SAI lost 6 officers and 200 men.” 

With Google earth I will be able to drive to the very road along which those men advanced and were cut down, and then on to the cemetery and to his grave.

I wonder at the horror and misery of battle, so far from home if he might have thought at some point – “Will anyone ever know how bad this is? Will anyone care or remember us?” I think I might stand there and say - “We did not forget”.

In fact - would any of those in WWI have thought that a century later, their descendants (in some cases of four generations) would stand on a parade square on the other side of the world with their medals, in remembrance of them? I think they would be pleased with it.

There are others among you who will have connections back to those who served in WWI. Perhaps, in coming dedications, as we reach the centenary of each the years of that war, we will talk more about them.

I will now read the roll of those we know of who have served and have passed on in the last year. The names I have are:

Air Marshal Archie Wilson, died on 4 July 2014
Malcom (Mal) Francis - BSAP Reserve and his daughter Catherine Francis, died after an attack on their farm in northern Zimbabwe which took place on 10 May 2014
Steve Walters - 6 (Indep) Coy Rhodesia Regiment, died on 26 May 2014
Rick Norrod - US Marines and Rhodesian Special Air Services, died on 4 June 2014 on the island of Maui after a long battle with lung cancer
David Brown - 2 Battalion Royal Rhodesia Regiment and BSAP A Reserve, died on 20 June 2014 at his home in Cape Town
John Barnes – Rhodesian Air Force died, on 3 September 2014 in England
Peter Barry Ronald Jackson - Royal Marines, Captain in the Rhodesian Army, 2I/C Base Group RLI and a TF with 10RR, died on 16 February 2015 after a long illness
Malcolm Hair - Intake 84 ‘C’ Company, Depot Royal Rhodesia Regiment, died on 17 December 2014
Major Noel Veale - “The Chief” A Coy 9RR, died in 2014
JPB (Pete) Nilson – Sergeant in the Scottish Paratroop Regiment WWII, served from 1943-1945, a Marandellas Farmer and BSAP Reservist, died in Perth in April 2015 at the age of 90

So today we take a brief moment in time - in what has now been a century - to reflect on and remember the fallen and to realise what we have today is in large part due to their sacrifices.

Please now stand in silence and during the silence our Sgt will salute those who served. At the end of the silence I will sound the bell.

The Memorial Bell was rung three times.

We read the Roll every year of course. In 2010, I read the name of Rick Nel, Rhodesian Artillery who died after an accident at Orewa in 2009. I was really pleased to learn that today Gareth Nel, Rick’s son, now of the Royal New Zealand Air Force, marched with us. As I say, it’s all about descendants today. I’m sure Rick would have been proud to know his son marched with the Rhodesians. Cathy, Rick’s wife is with us today as well.

I’ll close with a few lines from “Dulce et decorum est [pro patria mori]”, written by Wilfred Owen in 1917 when recovering from shell shock. Owen returned to the war and died in combat on November 4, 1918, just a year later, aged 25, a week before the signing of the Armistice. It is well known that the power of the poem – the title translated as “Sweet and proper it is [to die for one’s country]” - comes from its bitter, mocking tone, making the loss of life, tragic as it is, even more poignant.

“Bent double, like old beggars under sacks,
Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge,
Till on the haunting flares we turned our backs
And towards our distant rest began to trudge.
Men marched asleep. Many had lost their boots
But limped on, blood-shod. All went lame; all blind;
Drunk with fatigue; deaf even to the hoots
Of tired, outstripped Five-Nines that dropped behind.”

The next verse makes painful reading but I’ll end with the last few lines:

“My friend, you would not tell with such high zest
To children ardent for some desperate glory,
The old Lie: Dulce et decorum est
Pro patria mori.” 

Owen had seen it all. He’s saying – don’t tell the young that it was glamorous and glorious. Understand the horror and what they went through. Understand the loss and above all, never forget.

And we won’t – Today We Remember Them.

Denis Davison MFC (Ops) at the Rhodesian Service
. (Photo by Mike Boyd-Clark)

Brisbane, Australia
We received the following report from Brian Cornish:
It was, as usual for Brisbane, a delightfully sunny but not too warm a day. We mustered in Charlotte Street with a good turnout of Services and their families.  Families - thanks for your patient support and encouragement.

There were representatives from Rhodesia Regiment, RAR, RLI, BSAP, Selous Scouts, Grey Scouts, Psych Ops, and the Air Force – apologies for any units not listed!

Tony Rogers did a fine job in this, his last year of mustering us; trying very hard to keep us in step – (we need a lot more practise on the Parade ground, any volunteers?)

The huge crowd was very encouraging with a few heard to shout ‘Go Rhodesia’

Post parade we said our farewells until next year.  Some groups gathered at the United Services Club and others at Orleigh Park (under the Green & White) for a braai and chat over a few ‘cold drinks’.  At Orleigh Park we had the pleasure of the company of Wally Insch and his wonderful stories and sense of humour.

We will remember them!

So, until the UDI 50th Anniversary celebrations in November at Coffs Harbour, Northern New South Wales –
Fambai Dzvakanaka
Hamba Gahle


(Photo from Clive Cook)

Tony Rogers in centre
(Photo from Clive Cook)


October RV 9th to 11th October 2015

Time to mark this weekend down on your calendar: 9 – 11 October 2015.

This year’s RV will be back in Tauranga.

We decided to move away from Labour Weekend in order to allow travellers to not be competing with long weekend road conditions.

The RV will be on Saturday 10th October and on Sunday 11th will be the De-Brief (AGM and lunch)

We will publish more details in due course. For now, we recommend that you organise your accommodation.


 Dateline Rhodesia 1890 – 1980
by Gerry van Tonder, author and historian


Work has started on the construction of the Rhodesian Native Regiment/Rhodesian Africa Rifles Memorial at the National Memorial Arboretum near Alrewas, England. Plans for the dedication and unveiling are well underway, and the programme will be as follows:
Sunday 19 July 2015
1015hrs Recommended time of arrival at the NMA
1030hrs Tea/coffee in the marquee
1115hrs Move to the site of the Memorial
1130hrs Speech by the Lord Robert Cecil, 7th Marquess of Salisbury, KCVO, PC, DL
1215hrs Memorial Dedication Service
1230hrs Book of Remembrance deposited in Chapel. Participants move to marquee
1245hrs Fly Past by a Hawker Hunter and two Alouette III helicopters. Screening of films. Lunch served. Films continue in Marquee
1500hrs Guests and members disperse from this time.

Both the Book of Remembrance by Gerry van Tonder and Chibaya Moyo by Russell Fulton and Andy Telfer will be available for purchase and signing on the day.

This is going to be an historic event. Entry to the magnificent 150 acre National Memorial Arboretum (pictured below) is free and parking charges nominal.

Editor’s Note – two Craig Bone paintings are being auctioned with 100% of proceeds going to this construction project. See article at the end of this newsletter for more detail. Use this link to view and bid http://www.rhodesianservices.org/auctions.htm

Work in progress on the memorial.
(Photo Gerry van Tonder)

The Foundation Years
King Lobengula of Matabeleland granted the Rudd Concession, a written concession for exclusive mining rights in Matabeleland, Mashonaland and other adjoining territories, to Charles Rudd, James Rochfort Maguire and Francis Thompson, three agents acting on behalf of the South African-based politician and businessman Cecil Rhodes, on 30 October 1888. Despite Lobengula’s retrospective attempts to disavow it, it proved the foundation for the royal charter granted by the United Kingdom to Rhodes’ British South Africa Company in October 1889, and thereafter for the Pioneer Column’s occupation of Mashonaland in 1890, which marked the beginning of white settlement, administration and development in the country that eventually became Rhodesia.

Prior to this, Robert Moffat, after successfully leading a column of ox-drawn carts from Kuruman in Bechuanaland (modern-day Botswana), reached the kraal (and probably the headquarters) of amaNdebele king Mzilikazi, Mosega Kraal at Emhlangeni near the headwaters of the Crocodile River in October, 1859. Moffat was accompanied by, amongst others, William Sykes and Thomas Morgan Thomas. Why the London Mission Society (LMS) wished to establish its activities in this part of Africa is unclear. However, it is unlikely to be a coincidence that King Mzilikazi, whom Moffat had befriended whilst in Kuruman, had moved the amaNdebele nation here in an effort to avoid trekboers with whom he had unsuccessful clashes in the Transvaal. King Mzilikazi consented to Moffat, nickname Matshobane, and the LMS entering his kingdom, on the condition they did not engage in religious activities. He had hoped to use them as agents for trade with white traders from South Africa. The LMS established its mission station at Inyati, a stone’s throw away from Emhlangeni, in order that King Mzilikazi could keep a close eye on their activities.

While Mzilikazi was generally friendly to European travellers, he remained mindful of the danger that they posed to his kingdom and, in later years, he refused some visitors any access to his realm. The many European travellers who met with Mzilikazi, included Henry Hartley, the hunter and explorer, Robert Moffat the missionary, David Hume the explorer and trader, Andrew Smith the medical doctor, ethnologist and zoologist, William Cornwallis Harris the hunter, and the missionary explorer David Livingstone.

Mzilikazi died on 9 September 1868, leaving to his son, Lobengula, the legacy of transient relationships with Europeans from the south. It was also the new king’s fate to ‘host’ increasing numbers of a diversity of applicants requiring, with intense rivalry, his permission to ‘take the road’, and, ultimately, the Rudd Concession was drafted and signed by Lobengula:
Know all men by these presents, that whereas Charles Dunell Rudd, of Kimberley; Rochfort Maguire, of London; and Francis Robert Thompson, of Kimberley, hereinafter called the grantees, have covenanted and agreed, and do hereby covenant and agree, to pay to me, my heirs and successors, the sum of one hundred pounds sterling, British currency, on the first day of every lunar month; and further, to deliver at my royal kraal one thousand Martini-Henry breech-loading rifles, together with one hundred thousand rounds of suitable ball cartridge, five hundred of the said rifles and fifty thousand of the said cartridges to be ordered from England forthwith and delivered with reasonable despatch, and the remainder of the said rifles and cartridges to be delivered as soon as the said grantees shall have commenced to work mining machinery within my territory; and further, to deliver on the Zambesi River a steamboat with guns suitable for defensive purposes upon the said river, or in lieu of the said steamboat, should I so elect, to pay to me the sum of five hundred pounds sterling, British currency.

On the execution of these presents, I, Lobengula, King of Matabeleland, Mashonaland, and other adjoining territories, in exercise of my sovereign powers, and in the presence and with the consent of my council of indunas, do hereby grant and assign unto the said grantees, their heirs, representatives, and assigns, jointly and severally, the complete and exclusive charge over all metals and minerals situated and contained in my kingdoms, principalities, and dominions, together with full power to do all things that they may deem necessary to win and procure the same, and to hold, collect, and enjoy the profits and revenues, if any, derivable from the said metals and minerals, subject to the aforesaid payment; and whereas I have been much molested of late by divers persons seeking and desiring to obtain grants and concessions of land and mining rights in my territories, I do hereby authorise the said grantees, their heirs, representatives and assigns, to take all necessary and lawful steps to exclude from my kingdom, principalities, and dominions all persons seeking land, metals, minerals, or mining rights therein, and I do hereby undertake to render them all such needful assistance as they may from time to time require for the exclusion of such persons, and to grant no concessions of land or mining rights from and after this date without their consent and concurrence; provided that, if at any time the said monthly payment of one hundred pounds shall be in arrear for a period of three months, then this grant shall cease and determine from the date of the last-made payment; and further provided that nothing contained in these presents shall extend to or affect a grant made by me of certain mining rights in a portion of my territory south of the Ramaquaban River, which grant is commonly known as the Tati Concession.

AmaNdebele with Martini-Henry.
(Photo Lewis Walter)

A short while ago I was asked to try to find information about the recipient, in July 1908, of the Southern Rhodesia Volunteers Shooting Medal: a Sergeant W Little. What I found was quite remarkable, and it just makes me wonder how many more untold Rhodesian military stories are out there, waiting to see the light of day. The format following is that which I use, and call a fact file, when doing research into an individual.

Surname: LITTLE
First names: William
Date of Birth: 1881 Covington, Lanarkshire, Scotland
Marital status: Single
Religion: Presbyterian
Occupation: Coach and motor trade
Final rank: Second Lieutenant, commissioned 12 October 1915

  1. Southern Rhodesia Volunteers.
  2. 1st Rhodesia Regiment: No. 133, attested 20 October 1914 in Bulawayo, rank colour-sergeant. Demobbed 31 July 1915 when 1RR was disbanded. Saw active war service in German South West Africa from 22 December 1914 to 26 July 1915.
  3. 6th Battalion Durham Light Infantry.

Date of Death: 1 October 1916, at the Battle of le Transloy, The Somme, France. His body never found. He was 32 years old.
Family: Son of Mr James Little, Cormiston, Biggar, Lanarkshire, Scotland.

Hamilton Advertiser 14 October 1916
Died For His Country
Mr James Little, Townshead, has just had official notice that his son, Second Lieutenant William Little, Durham Light Infantry, has been killed on the 2nd inst. Lieut. Little went through the Boer War, the “De Wet” rebellion, and on the outbreak of the present war he joined the Durham L.I. he was 32 years of age. He served his apprenticeship with the late William Haldane, coachbuilder here, and until his enlistment he carried on a successful business in South Africa”.


Thiepval Memorial, France. Little’s name is on: Pier and Face 14 A and 15 C.
(Photo Gerry van Tonder)


The Biggar War Memorial, High Street, Biggar, Lanarkshire, Scotland.(Photo Internet)


Biggar High School Roll of Honour.
(Photos Internet)


The Royal British Legion, where Gerry van Tonder has the following commemoration:
First served with Southern Rhodesia Volunteers, then 1st Rhodesia Regiment, before enlisting with DLI. All Rhodesians remember your sacrifice.

William Little appears on both the 1st Rhodesia Regiment medal roll and the Southern Rhodesia WWI Roll of Honour. The latter shows W Little as 1st Rhodesia Regiment and Durham Light Infantry, killed in action in France on 1 October 1916.

Little is listed on the Roll of Persons who left Southern Rhodesia for Active Service, giving the 1st Rhodesia Regiment as his unit.

The London Gazette of 11 October 1915, lists William Little receiving his commission into the Durham Light Infantry, with the rank of second lieutenant.

Medals and Awards:

  1. World War I trio
  2. Red Chevron
  3. Mention in Despatches
  4. Southern Rhodesia Volunteers Shooting Medal


1.  Left to right: 1914-15 Star, issued by South Africa; British War Medal; Victory Medal. (Photo Gerry van Tonder)

2. The award of a Red Chevron acknowledged any service prior to 31 December 1914. The rest of their service would lead to Blue Chevrons (Photos Internet).

A man who arrived in German South West Africa with the 1st Rhodesia Regiment in December 1914, would have been entitled to a Red Chevron, and those who were reinforcements in 1915, would only have received a Blue Chevron.

So if a  member of  the initial party  had transferred  to one of the British regiments (as many did) in France, and  had  served out the war in France with  that unit,  he would  have been entitled  to one Red  (1914) and  four Blue Chevrons: 1915, 1916,1917, and 1918, thus  receiving the maximum of five chevrons. Red chevrons were therefore rare to Southern Rhodesians.

3. Second Supplement to The London Gazette of Tuesday, the 2nd of January 1917:

War Office,
2nd January,

The following despatch has been received by the Secretary of State for War from General Sir Douglas Haig, G.C.B., Commander-in- Chief of the British Armies in France: —

General Headquarters, 13th November 1916.
I have the honour to submit a list of names of those officers, ladies, non-commissioned officers and men, serving, or who have served, under my command, whose distinguished and gallant services and devotion to duty I consider deserving of special mention.
I have the honour to be,
Your obedient Servant,
The British Armies in France.

Mention in Despatches, 1914-1919.
The device of bronze oak leaves denoting a Mention in Despatches during the First World War, is worn on the riband of the Victory Medal.
(Photo Internet)

Medal Index Card. Due to the fact that 1RR were on garrison duty prior to being deployed to German South West Africa, the South African authorities were responsible for the issue of the 1914-15 Star. Upon joining the DLI, this then became the responsibility of Britain.

Service card showing Mention in Despatches award



4. Southern Rhodesia Volunteers Shooting Medal, awarded to Sgt W. Little in July 1908. The Stirling silver medal was struck in Birmingham in 1904 by silversmith Robert Chandler. The ‘BYO’ mark below the suspender stands for Bulawayo. (Photos Norman Scott)

6th Battalion Durham Light Infantry

Durham Light Infantry badge (Photo Internet)

The 6th Battalion Durham Light Infantry, when deployed to the Western Front in France, was attached to the 151st  (Durham Light Infantry) Brigade, 50th (Northumbrian) Division. The Division’s general officer commanding (GOC) was Major-General Sir Percival S. Wilkinson, a post he held from August 1915 to February 1918. (It is interesting to note that the Division’s first General Officer Commanding was Lieutenant-General Sir Robert Baden-Powell, the ‘father’ of the Rhodesia Regiment.) The Division formed part of III Corps (Lieutenant-General William Pulteney), IV Army (Lieutenant-General Henry Rawlinson)
17 April 1915: landed at Boulogne.
14 May 1915: became 151st Brigade in 50th (Northumbrian) Division.
3 June 1915: after taking heavy casualties, 1/6th and 1/8th Battalions merged to form 6/8th Battalion.
15 July 1918: with major losses, reduced to cadre strength and transferred to Lines of Communication.
16 August 1918: transferred to 117th Brigade in 39th Division.
6 November 1918: disbanded in France.

Killed in Action
On 10 August, 1916, the 6th Battalion, Durham Light Infantry (DLI) entrained at Godewaersvelde, a village near the Belgian border, about 16 kilometres southwest of Ieper (Ypres) and, detraining at Candas, marched to Gézaincourt, where they spent four days resting. The 15th, 16th and 17th were spent in marching through Vignacourt and Ovillers. It was about this time that the Battalion began to wear the cloth red diamonds, which came to be regarded with almost as much pride as the cap badge, and continued to be worn as long as the Battalion existed as a unit in France.

On 6 September, Brigadier-General NJG Cameron took over command of the Brigade. Four days later, the Battalion moved to bivouacs in Bécourt Wood, and there the final preparations were made for action. Then, amid the growing violence of the artillery preparation, it moved again on 14 September to Shelter Wood.

Zero for the second phase of the Somme battle was 0620 hours on 15 September. The 149th and 150th Infantry Brigades were then in the front line between High Wood and Martinpuich, with the 151st Brigade in reserve.

British troops at Martinpuich, Battle of the Somme; the very same scene that met Little when he arrived here in mid-September 1916.
(Photo Internet)

At zero, the Battalion moved from Shelter Wood, by way of Sausage Valley, to an old German trench at the southwest corner of Mametz Wood. About noon, a further forward advance was made: ‘Y’ and ‘Z’ Companies to the northern edge of the wood, and ‘W’ and ‘X’ Companies to a position a little further forward, between Mametz and Bazentin-le-Petit Woods. So far, the Battalion had escaped shellfire, and the men were very interested in prisoners who were being escorted to the rear. At about 1100 hours, a message was received that the 47th Division had failed to take High Wood, and that the two Brigades of the 50th Division had secured their objectives. Later came a message that the 47th Division had taken High Wood at their second attempt. Rations arrived about 1700 hours, and whilst they were being distributed, Lieutenant-Colonel Jeffreys returned from Brigade Headquarters with orders to move up at once.

Elements of the Durham Light Infantry on the move
(Photo Internet)

By this time, the area was full of movement. Guns, ammunition, ration wagons, and troops were everywhere, moving up after the advance. After a conference at Brigade Headquarters, orders were again issued for a move, and at about 2100 hours, the Battalion, in fours, led by the commanding officer and a guide from the Northumberland Fusiliers, moved from the Quarry with orders to attack from Eye and Clark’s trenches at 2130. The attack was to be made in four waves, with the 9th Durham Light Infantry, who had been in position on the right all that afternoon, the 6th in the centre, and the 5th Border Regiment on the left.

A Durham Light Infantry forward post on The Somme, with telescope and signalling equipment.
(Photo Internet)

Unfortunately, the guide lost his way, and after unnecessary wandering, the head of the Battalion arrived in Clark’s trench, at the junction with Bethel Sap, at 2115. After considerable difficulty, owing to ignorance of the ground, the companies got into position: ‘W’ Company, under Captain J Cook, was on the left of the first wave, and ‘X’ Company, under Captain WFE Badcock, on the right. ‘Z’ (left) and ‘Y’ (right) companies were in support.
Just as they got into Clark’s trench, Second Lieutenant Annett, commanding ‘Y’ Company, was killed, and Second Lieutenant BJ Harvey, though wounded, took command. At the time appointed for the attack, the 5th Border Regiment could not be located, so the 6th and 9th Durham Light Infantry, after waiting about an hour, advanced. Crossing Hook trench, which had been the enemy frontline in the morning, and was now held by remnants of the 149th Brigade, they moved down the slope towards Starfish and Prue trenches, the first objective.

They were met by a certain amount of machine-gun and rifle fire, and had a few casualties, including Captain Badcock, who was wounded. The 6th Battalion continued to advance, however, until completely checked by machine-gun fire, and then took cover in ditches and shell holes.

Battle of The Somme: July–November 1916 Rawlinson’s IV Army was headquartered at Albert, with III Corps just to the northeast.
(Image Internet)

It was then discovered that there was a considerable gap on the right, but by moving men in that direction, contact was regained with the 9th Battalion. At about 0330 on the 16th the commanding officer took up ‘Z’ Company to reinforce the frontline. The 5th Border Regiment also moved up at the same time. The whole line was then pushed forward and straightened. Battalion Headquarters remained in Clark’s trench. Accordingly, the Battalion paraded and marched up the road to the Quarry at Bazentin-le-Petit.

Things were fairly quiet during the day, and at night a shallow communication trench was dug over the ridge, and attempts made to improve the forward positions. Efforts were also made to collect the Battalion into companies. However, on the 17th the only parties under the control of Headquarters were half of ‘SV’ Company, under Captain Cook, part of ‘X Company, under Lieutenant Harris, a platoon of ‘Z’ Company, under Lieutenant WB Hansell, and ‘Y’ Company, in reserve in a sunken road, under Second Lieutenants McVicker and Richardson. It was known that other isolated groups were in positions in the front line. One of these was organized for defence under orders of Private B McLinden of ‘X’ Company, who subsequently received the Military Medal.

The horrific devastation that was The Somme
(Photo Internet)

The chief obstacle to a further advance was an enemy strongpoint called the Crescent. Accordingly, a party was organized to attack it, consisting of two bombing squads, one each from the 6th and 8th Battalions under Second Lieutenant JFG Aubin, now Brigade Bombing Officer. Leaving by way of Crescent Alley at 1800, they met with considerable shellfire and were disorganized. Re-forming, however, they went out again with the same result. The shelling proved to be the preliminary to an attack on the 150th Brigade, which was beaten off, ‘Y’ Company being used to assist their neighbours with Lewis guns.

The following day (18th) was misty, and it was thought that the Germans were evacuating Starfish trench. An attack was therefore ordered to occupy it. This attack was made by the 6th Battalion on the left, and the 9th on the right, each providing 100 men.

Second Lieutenant William Little, with fifty men of ‘W’ Company, composed the Battalion’s frontline, and Second Lieutenant William Ferrier Charlton, with fifty of ‘Z’ Company, the supporting line. A few men of other companies were also mixed in with these two lines.

Shortly after starting, they came under heavy machine-gun fire, taking a number of casualties, including Second Lieutenant Charlton, who was killed. Some of the party returned to their line during the day and others that night. All who had been near the enemy trench reported it to be strongly held.

During the morning, ‘Y’ Company was sent up to relieve ‘W’, ‘X’ and ‘Z’ companies in the frontline. Owing to the trenches being very muddy after rain, and at all places very shallow, this was a difficult operation. To add to the difficulty, the 8th Battalion began to arrive to relieve the Battalion before the company relief was complete, however, they at last got out and moved back to 6th Avenue East and the intermediate line, where two days were spent in cleaning up. Here Lieutenant Ebsworth re-joined as Adjutant, and the officers and men who had been left at the transport lines came up.

Over the top!
(Photo Internet)

On 26 September Lieutenant-Colonel Jeffreys left the Battalion to go to England for three months’ rest, and Major Wilkinson took over command. The following day, a move was made to Hook trench, where the men lived in small shelters and provided working parties at nights. This trench was on the skyline, and as a result received considerable attention from the German gunners. To prevent casualties, and also to provide more room, two companies were pushed forward on the 28th to Starfish trench. From these positions, in the afternoon, the Battalion relieved the 9th Battalion in the frontline. The relief was observed by the enemy, and the communication trench shelled.

The disposition of Companies was, from right to left: ‘Y’, ‘Z’, ‘W’, ‘X’, each company having two platoons in the frontline (North Durham Street), and two platoons in the support line (South Durham Street). At night they occupied battle positions, and extended the trench they occupied by 150 to 800 yards. The 9th Battalion was in support in Crescent Alley. On the left was the 5th Border Regiment, and on the right the 47th Division, but it was not possible to communicate with the flanks during the night.

By dawn, all preparations, including the alteration of watches to wintertime, were completed for the attack, which had been ordered for 1 October. The preliminary bombardment commenced at 0700, and continued until zero (0815), when it changed to a barrage. Unfortunately, there were some casualties from shells falling short: the total casualties for the day being about forty, including the commanding officer, who was wounded. Lieutenant-Colonel Roland Boys Bradford (24), now commanding the 9th Battalion, asked for and was given permission to take command of 6th Battalion also. For his subsequent work that day, he was awarded the Victoria Cross.

He arrived at Battalion Headquarters at zero, and at once went up to the front line. The attack commenced at 2015 but, partly on account of the failure of the 47th Division on the right, and partly owing to the wire not being properly cut, the attackers were held up by machine-gun fire, resulting in heavy casualties being sustained.

Lewis machine-gun team
(Photo Internet)

After considerable fighting with bombs and rifles, three Lewis-gun teams of ‘X’ Company, under Second Lieutenant W Little and Second Lieutenant C L Tyerman, and one team of ‘W’ Company under Second Lieutenant Barnett, succeeded in getting a footing in the first objective. These organized the position and carried on bombing attacks, but in the action, Second Lieutenant Little was killed.

During these operations Lieutenant-Colonel Bradford arrived on the scene, and immediately took charge of the situation. Under his direction and leadership, the whole of the first objective was gained. A Company of the 9th Battalion then came up, and using the new position as a starting point, advanced and took the final objective after dark.

Lieutenant-Colonel Roland Boys Bradford, also a recipient of the Military Cross, (he had been promoted to the rank of brigadier-general, the youngest general officer in the British army of modern times, and the youngest promoted professionally; earlier young generals were simply due to position) was himself killed in action on 30 November 1917. One of four brothers, Roland’s brothers, Lieutenant Commander George Bradford was also awarded the Victoria Cross, Captain Thomas Bradford the Distinguished Service Order, and Lieutenant James Bradford the Military Cross.

(Photo Gerry van Tonder)


Rhodesia’s Medals
Awarded for brave and gallant conduct to both civilians and members of the security forces in a non-combatant capacity.

It is a 36 mm bronze medal, with the head of Cecil John Rhodes on the obverse, and a plain reverse side. Additional awards are denoted with a bronze clasp. The bright plum-coloured ribbon makes it easy to distinguish from the other medals which also carry Rhodes’s effigy on the obverse.

Of interest is that the City of Umtali received this award on 27 February 1979.

Above and Beyond
19 April 1945:
Acting Company Sergeant Major HPA STAUNTON
The Rhodesia Regiment (attached The 2nd Battalion, Nigeria Regiment, 1 (West Africa) Brigade)
Recommended citation as contained in WO document 373/36. Lieutenant-General Oliver Leese, Commander-in-Chief Allied Land Forces South East Asia, endorsed:        

ARAKAN. W/SJT: A/CSM Harvey Patrick Ashley Staunton. On the evening of 23 JAN 45, CSM Staunton was in command of a fighting patrol sent to the western outskirts of MYOHAUNG. His patrol soon came upon a party of Japanese who were attempting to demolish an important bridge across a chaung.

CSM Staunton immediately attacked the enemy, inflicted casualties and drove them to the opposite bank before they were able to do much damage to the bridge.

Almost at once his patrol came under heavy machine gun and mortar fire which wounded two of his men, CSM Staunton, although his patrol was in the open, disregarded the enemy’s fire and so disposed his men that they were able for 48 hours to prevent the enemy tampering with the bridge. After he had made his dispositions he returned to his two wounded men and brought them back, still under fire, to a safe place and then re-joined his patrol. He was able eventually to put two sections across the bridge and drive out the enemy still resisting on the far bank. It was due in great measure to his coolness, personal courage and fine leadership that his patrol was so brilliantly successful.”


GVI Military Medal
(Photo thanks to Tony Fraser and Rhodesia Regiment 1899-1981)

At the Going Down of the Sun

The WWI Memorial in the Pioneer Cemetery, Harare (
Photo Rich Perry)

Looking back…
This article appeared in the Nottingham Evening Post on 1 August 1942:

…and they said
Que Que-born Rhodesian pilot William Dives DFC, flew 44 (Rhodesia) Squadron Lancaster bombers out of RAF Spilsby during WWII. In his book, A Bundu Boy in Bomber Command , I found this lovely little anecdote of the flight returning to base after a bombing sortie over Germany:
Robbie Hart [before the sortie] told me to switch on to the station radio channel soon after leaving the target area. It was on a VHF wavelength, which meant that everybody from Spilsby, in short range would receive, while Base would not.
We were always ordered to maintain strict radio silence until our return. Robbie said he would call up all the Bundu Boys
[Rhodesians] on the Op in chilapalapa, just as a joke. [Chilapalapa, also known as fanagalo or kitchen kaffir, is a hybrid lingua franca made up of English, Afrikaans, and several indigenous languages, first used as the main form of communication on the South African gold mines.]

When we were well clear of the flak and heading south for home, I pressed the R/T [radio transmit] button at the side and heard Robbie calling:
“Bwana Hayla. Kunjane wena?” (Les Hayler, how are you?)
Mushi, mushi.” (very good) came the reply.
Bwana Seet. Wena longeli?” Seat Coventry’s turn to answer.
Aikona! Lo hydraulics ka mena ena feeli.” (No! My hydraulics are dead) He could not close his bomb doors.
“Ah, solly maningi. Hamba gashli!” (Very sorry. Go carefully!)
Bwana Sagodo. Kunjane?” Mike Wood answered:
Mushi. But Hokoyo lo bandits!” (OK, but look out for fighters!)
We all checked in “mushi mushi.”
Zvakanaka! Faga moto!” (Very good! Stoke up! Literally, put on fire!)
I thoroughly agreed with that.
This was our
33rd op and our luck was still holding.


A 44 (Rhodesia) Squadron Lancaster bomber
(Image Dudley Wall)


Dives DFC, W, A Bundu Boy in Bomber Command, Trafford, 2003
Vaughan-Williams DSO, Lt-Col H, A Visit to Lobengula in 1889, Shuter and Shooter, Pietermaritzburg, 1947


G.R. van Tonder

Copy Editing, Proofreading and Research Services
47 Hollis Street, Alvaston, Derby, DE24 8QW, UK
Website ‘The Rhodesian Soldier’ www.rhodesiansoldier.com

CQ Store
www.rhodesianservices.org/The%20Shop.htm  to see what is in store for you.

Please give our CQ Store consideration when buying a present for friends or family. Profits from the sale of these items go towards the Museum Fund. All prices are in NZ$ and do not include postage.

UK based stock
Gerry van Tonder is holding stock of the smaller CQ items in the UK. All items stocked in the UK are noted on our website with a Union Jack  You can order direct from Gerry by emailing g.van-tonder@sky.com

NZ customers can pay by direct deposit with bank details being supplied on request
Overseas customers - we prefer payment by PayPal, personal or bank cheque.  We can accept personal cheques from most countries with the exception of South Africa. If you elect payment by PayPal, we will bill you from

Please note that we can only process credit cards via PayPal. Rest assured, if you want to make a purchase we will make a plan to enable you to pay!

 Clothing - shirts, jackets, caps, beanies, aprons, and regimental ties.
 Berets & Badges – most Rhodesian units available.
 Medals & Ribbons – an extensive range available.
 Posters & Maps – high quality reproductions.
 DVDs & Phone tones – historical footage, unique cell phone tones.
 Other goods - flags, bumper stickers, lighters, and more, as well as quality products direct from our contributing supporters.

After a 15 year gestation period, this long awaited book is now available:
Rhodesia Regiment 1899 – 1981 by Peter Baxter, Hugh Bomford, Gerry van Tonder et al. Published by the Rhodesian Services Association.

This book is a definitive record of the Rhodesia Regiment. It is being funded and published by the Rhodesian Services Association as part of a major historical record.

Queen Elizabeth II, Colonel in Chief of the Royal Rhodesia Regiment, posed for a photo for this book and graciously gave us her good wishes for the success of the project in 2011. She asked if she could have a copy of the book.

On Thursday 7 August 2014 a copy was delivered to Buckingham Palace by Gerry van Tonder and Hugh and Diana Bomford's eldest daughter. The book was duly delivered to the Queen who was in residence at Balmoral Castle at the time. A letter of thanks from Her Majesty was received a few days later. This was landmark event in the history of our country and for this, the largest literary project in the history of Rhodesia, a very proud moment.

Inscription in the Royal presentation book.

Contact these stockists for price details:
Worldwide sales ex New Zealand email
South Africa email
UK email
Zimbabwe email

Book details:
Total 614 printed pages 300 x 220mm portrait made up as:
528pp x b/w text/photos
8pp x colour photo section
8pp x colour map section
56pp full colour Honours and Awards and Uniforms, Embellishments and Equipment sections
Appendices covering Honours & Awards includes numerous citations; complete Roll of Honour 1899-1981; Leadership Roll; Intake numbers and dates
2pp x tip-in page
Over 8,000 individual names in the book
Illustrations - over 1,500 photos, maps and drawings
Weight 2.7kg

Coming soon:
British South Africa lapel pins, gold plated, price will be NZ$15 plus P&P

New products:
Rhodesian General Service Medal ribbon lapel pins
Lapel pins depicting service medal ribbons are very popular around the world so we did a consumer survey and decided that it was a worthwhile project.

RGSM ribbon lapel pin measures 19mm x 6mm with a clutch pin fastener on the back

Price NZ$10 + P&P
These will be available to UK residents from Gerry van Tonder g.van-tonder@sky.com

Remembrance Poppy decal stickers. Three designs pictured below to choose from. 80mm wide x 100mm high, made from high quality ink on white adhesive vinyl, they will last at least five years on the outside of your car.

Price NZ$4 each plus P&P.
The Rhodesian Lion & Tusk will be available to UK residents from Gerry van Tonder g.van-tonder@sky.com

Rhodesian Women’s Service felt hats.
Another milestone on our ‘we will do it’ record was the delivery of eight RWS hats to some of our former servicewomen around the world. This project took a long time to accomplish and we had quite a few road bumps along the way but we got there and the end. With no example to work from, we stretched our resources and the QM’s nerves. Happily the resultant product is a magnificent copy of the original hats.

We are now taking orders for the next batch. Email thecqstore@rhodesianservices.org with your head size and requirement. The hats are NZ$90 each plus P&P. The RWS badge is NZ$40, fitting NZ$15. Other badges may be available – please inquire.

L-R Women’s felt hat badged for Rhodesian Women’s Service and Rhodesian Corps of Signals

Popular products:
Over the last two months we have set up many berets and medal groups. See this page for berets http://www.rhodesianservices.org/berets---badges.htm  and this page for medals http://www.rhodesianservices.org/medals.htm

Winter is here for some of us and if you are like me you do not like your head getting cold – so for NZ$22 plus P+P - here is the answer:

Above photos show some of our selection of beanies. We have two styles – 100% acrylic with turnup (no lining); cable knit with polar fleece lining (very warm)

Remember – when you support the Rhodesian Services Association CQ Store you are helping to preserve Rhodesian history.

To order from the CQ Store - go on line to http://www.rhodesianservices.org/clothing.htm - select what you want and then email thecqstore@rhodesianservices.org for a full price including postage and methods of payment.

Books for Africa
I again remind you that all the books and audio visual disks that I stock and sell are listed at www.rhodesianservices.org/Books.htm  These sales are my own hobby and income from sales is directed to me and not the Rhodesian Services Association.  However, the Association does benefit indirectly from these sales.  A great selection of books, many with a Rhodesian connection, can be found on the link above. All prices are in NZ$ and do not include postage.

A small sample of titles in stock at www.rhodesianservices.org/Books.htm


Our Supporters– please also view our webpage http://www.rhodesianservices.org/our-supporters.htm
This section is for individuals and businesses who support this Association either by giving us something for auction at the RV in October; by donations from sales generated from our listings of their product or service; by offering discount to buyers who mention the Rhodesian Services Association when making a purchase; contributing material to our Museum and Archives.

Email me at theeditor@rhodesianservices.org for details of how you get a mention here.

The Association is very grateful to all our contributors; please reciprocate this support by supporting them in turn. Please don’t forget to mention where you saw their advert.

Buckles and Tees www.bucklesandtees.co.nz
Mike Vivier has a number of Rhodesian related lines which include the 'Advice to Terrorists' image on t-shirts and aprons as well this stunning Rhodesia Regiment belt buckle which sells for NZ$24.95 excluding postage.  100% New Zealand made.

Mike donates a portion of his income from all Rhodesian related items sold to the Rhodesian Services Association. Please email Mike at mike_jovivier@xtra.co.nz with your order or query or go to www.bucklesandtees.co.nz  and do it on-line.

Gerry van Tonder Professional Research Services for Service History Research, Copy Editing, Proofreading
offers a professional, quality research service, specializing in the service history of Rhodesians who served in the two World Wars.

It is amazing what information exists about your father, grandfather, or uncle, and as I have experienced with everyone for whom I have done what I call a Fact File, invariably information comes to light, which they were not aware of. Go to www.rhodesiansoldier.com and use the Research button to access samples and to make inquiries.


The Global Forked Stick - Snippets and Requests

With grateful thanks to Vic MacKenzie for use of this illustration to better explain
the ‘forked stick’ connection for those who were not raised in Africa.

Dolores Cross Project report by Hugh Bomford
Diana and I recently met Dolores Ho who is the Archivist at the National Army Museum at Waiouru, New Zealand.

Dolores is an immigrant (like us) and is a very interesting, knowledgeable and extremely hardworking person.

Dolores has made a personal mission to place a flax cross and Remembrance Poppy on every grave of every Kiwi soldier lying in foreign soil and take a photo of the grave with the cross and poppy – see below. Dolores hand-makes each flax cross herself.


I asked Dolores specifically if she wanted to include Kiwis who fell during the course of other conflicts and her reply was:
“Yes, I do cover graves of New Zealanders who were attached to foreign forces. If you do know of anyone who can help in those areas, please ask them to contact me. Currently I am only covering names that are listed on the Commonwealth War Graves Commission database.  It is difficult to cover those that are not on their database because I just don’t have the time to do the research.  I am managing the project on my own.”

Here are some countries in Africa and the Middle East on the CWGC listed cemeteries where Kiwis lie:
Sierra Leone

From the Anglo-Boer War period I know that there were Kiwis buried near Beira in Mozambique and of course all over South Africa

I really want to help Dolores with this admirable project and I have confidence that our wide network of Rhodesians around the world, especially in outlying places in Africa, the Middle East and Asia will show an interest and come forward.

Please – if you live in a country where there are war graves or if you are travelling anywhere (and this includes going to countries like Japan (where in fact my uncle lies) – consider contacting Dolores and become part of her project. You will be assisting in forming a wonderful record and linking families up with their solder ancestors. Do a good deed for someone – one day it may be reciprocated for you.

This is Dolores’ website http://www.dolorescrossproject.org/ her Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/DoloresCrossProject?fref=ts or for direct contact Dolores’ email is dolorescrossproject@gmail.com 

Dolores is also asking for assistance with making the flax crosses. If you are a crafts person living in New Zealand and can assist please email Dolores on dolorescrossproject@gmail.com 

Depot Royal Rhodesia Regiment - Intake 100
If anyone has unit photos of Intake 100 please can you contact Vic Schultz by email schultzgv@bigpond.com

RAR Auction
On behalf of the Rhodesian Army Association we are running auctions for two original oil paintings by world renowned artist, Craig Bone. 100% of proceeds from the auctions go to the RAA. This money will be towards the construction of the Rhodesian Native Regiment/Rhodesian Africa Rifles Memorial at the National Memorial Arboretum near Alrewas, England (see details in Gerry van Tonder’s column above). To view and take part in the auctions please use this entry page http://www.rhodesianservices.org/auctions.htm  In order to bid you will need to be registered.

These auctions finish on 22 July 2015 (New Zealand time) so do not delay registering and making a bid on these paintings for this very worthy cause.

That’s all folks, so until next time – go well.


Celebrate ‘Rhodesia Day’* on the 11th November each year


*The concept of ‘Rhodesia Day’ originates from the late Eddy Norris and family. During the 90 year
life span of Rhodesia we experienced the best of times and the worst of times. I encourage everyone to use this
day to remember the good times as well as remembering those who are no longer with us.


Rhodesian Services Association donations.
You can make a donation to the Rhodesian Services Association by clicking on our 'Collection Hat' below which is a typical slouch hat of the type used by the Rhodesian Army up until the 1960’s. Click on the hat or this link: https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_s-xclick&hosted_button_id=MLMB2B8Y2UY3G and if you are registered with PayPal the process will be immediate. If you are not a PayPal member you will be given instruction on how to make a credit card payment via PayPal. Thank you - every bit helps.

This newsletter is compiled by Hugh Bomford, Newsletter Editor of the Rhodesian Services Association.  It contains many personal views and comments which may not always be the views of the Association or Committee.