Swindon AdvertiserPride of the Gurkhas (From Swindon Advertiser)

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Pride of the Gurkhas

Swindon Advertiser: Councillors Derique Montaut and Fay Howard with the Ghurkas who were honoured for keeping their community tidy Councillors Derique Montaut and Fay Howard with the Ghurkas who were honoured for keeping their community tidy

ELDERLY Gurkhas who patrol the streets of Swindon to keep their community safe have been thanked for their dedication.

Each week, the group of 20 senior citizen volunteers – 18 of whom come from the Nepalese community in Walcot – spend two hours walking the streets, looking out for things that could pose a risk to public safety.

Yesterday, more than 120 Gurkhas, their families and their supporters, gathered in the Buckhurst Park Community Centre in Walcot, to show their appreciation for the hard work that the volunteers have done since the launch of the initiative three years ago.

Lal Sundar Rai, senior citizen co-ordinator of the Nepalese Association, said: “It’s very good and not expected and it was wonderful that the borough council representatives were able to come and offer that recognition to the volunteers.

“It is not easy for the senior citizens to go there every week, especially in the winter when it gets very cold. But they do it so that everyone is safe and that homes, garages and businesses are all secure. It is a very special day because it’s three years since they started, and it’s good for them to know how much they are appreciated in the community.”

Street Watch was set up in 2011 to monitor crime and safety. For two hours each week between 6pm and 8pm, the Street Watch Team patrols Covingham, Nythe, Wanborough, Parks, Walcot, Lawns and Old Town, looking out for litter, fly-tipping, vandalism, graffiti, defective streetlights and much more, which they then report to the council and the police.

Terence Hayward, who leads the volunteers in Swindon, said it was high time the group is recognised. “I went to a meeting three years ago and spoke about Street Watch and asked if any of them wanted to help to keep the community safe,” he said.

“A few signed up straight away, and more have come on over time.

“When we started we’d go out, rain or shine, in just what we were wearing and many of them got very, very cold and dropped out. So I managed to get them our own uniform with a coat and a hat.

“It’s been really good for them because not only are they contributing to the community and getting together but most of them have been in the forces like me so they build up a sense of camaderie among them.”

Certificates were presented to each of the volunteers by Cllr Emma Faramarzi, Cabinet Member for Housing and Public Safety.

Comments (14)

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9:24am Sat 12 Jul 14

kenwood1924@googlemail .com says...

Well done the Gurkhas for your dedication, I have lived in Queens Drive for 53 years and walk my dog every day around the area of Walcot twice a day, it disgusts me the amount of rubbish that I see, if I wasn't in my 90th year and fit and able, I would gladly join you, Swindon should be proud and are proud of you, THANK YOU,
Well done the Gurkhas for your dedication, I have lived in Queens Drive for 53 years and walk my dog every day around the area of Walcot twice a day, it disgusts me the amount of rubbish that I see, if I wasn't in my 90th year and fit and able, I would gladly join you, Swindon should be proud and are proud of you, THANK YOU, kenwood1924@googlemail .com
  • Score: 29

10:17am Sat 12 Jul 14

kenwood1924@googlemail .com says...

P S, to them and to my Gurkha friends, DHERAI RAMRO, DHANYE BAD
P S, to them and to my Gurkha friends, DHERAI RAMRO, DHANYE BAD kenwood1924@googlemail .com
  • Score: 7

11:01am Sat 12 Jul 14

Another view says...

A wonderful example to all of us.
A wonderful example to all of us. Another view
  • Score: 18

12:50pm Sat 12 Jul 14

Hmmmf says...

Didn't the police used to do something like this?
Didn't the police used to do something like this? Hmmmf
  • Score: 11

3:38pm Sat 12 Jul 14

Badgersgetabadname says...

If only more people were community minded.
A credit to themselves, their family and of course their tradition.

Maybe other people would be prepared to emulate this example and spread the idea around the town.
As mentioned earlier I am sure I used to see people with little black hats on sometimes wearing hi-vis vests looking to provide public safety....Cant remember what they are called though.
If only more people were community minded. A credit to themselves, their family and of course their tradition. Maybe other people would be prepared to emulate this example and spread the idea around the town. As mentioned earlier I am sure I used to see people with little black hats on sometimes wearing hi-vis vests looking to provide public safety....Cant remember what they are called though. Badgersgetabadname
  • Score: -2

3:45pm Sat 12 Jul 14

MrAngry says...

Well done. It is great to see volunteers giving up there free time to serve the community. If I was in power, I would give them all a 10% pay rise.
Well done. It is great to see volunteers giving up there free time to serve the community. If I was in power, I would give them all a 10% pay rise. MrAngry
  • Score: 5

4:44pm Sat 12 Jul 14

Badgersgetabadname says...

MrAngry wrote:
Well done. It is great to see volunteers giving up there free time to serve the community. If I was in power, I would give them all a 10% pay rise.
Strange that people that worked so hard, provided and sacrificed so much for the country had to jump through so many hoops to gain rights in this country.

I do always smile and nod whenever I see these gents but will make a point to say hello and thank you next time.
[quote][p][bold]MrAngry[/bold] wrote: Well done. It is great to see volunteers giving up there free time to serve the community. If I was in power, I would give them all a 10% pay rise.[/p][/quote]Strange that people that worked so hard, provided and sacrificed so much for the country had to jump through so many hoops to gain rights in this country. I do always smile and nod whenever I see these gents but will make a point to say hello and thank you next time. Badgersgetabadname
  • Score: -1

5:51pm Sat 12 Jul 14

kenwood1924@googlemail .com says...

Sorry Hmmmf, I can go back a long way and I have an excellent memory, I certainly do not remember the police picking up rubbish, what I do remember is that we took our rubbish home.
Sorry Hmmmf, I can go back a long way and I have an excellent memory, I certainly do not remember the police picking up rubbish, what I do remember is that we took our rubbish home. kenwood1924@googlemail .com
  • Score: 12

8:41pm Sat 12 Jul 14

Davey Gravey says...

Such respectable people and they also have fought side by side for Britain.
More people treated disgustingly by our government by the way.
Such respectable people and they also have fought side by side for Britain. More people treated disgustingly by our government by the way. Davey Gravey
  • Score: 0

9:19am Mon 14 Jul 14

Sandor Clegane says...

The treatment of the Gurkha's under Labour was a shameful episode. Both Gordon Brown and Phil Woolas (Labour's Immigration minister at the time) acted appallingly.

Thankfully, the negative publicity brought against Labour by Joanna Lumley forced Labour to do the decent thing, for once.
The treatment of the Gurkha's under Labour was a shameful episode. Both Gordon Brown and Phil Woolas (Labour's Immigration minister at the time) acted appallingly. Thankfully, the negative publicity brought against Labour by Joanna Lumley forced Labour to do the decent thing, for once. Sandor Clegane
  • Score: 5

10:15am Mon 14 Jul 14

Badgersgetabadname says...

Sandor Clegane wrote:
The treatment of the Gurkha's under Labour was a shameful episode. Both Gordon Brown and Phil Woolas (Labour's Immigration minister at the time) acted appallingly.

Thankfully, the negative publicity brought against Labour by Joanna Lumley forced Labour to do the decent thing, for once.
Always with a dig at labor whenever possible.
This is a great story, local people taking some responsibility this should be celebrated rather than a cheap shot.
Never mind its what you do isnt it.
[quote][p][bold]Sandor Clegane[/bold] wrote: The treatment of the Gurkha's under Labour was a shameful episode. Both Gordon Brown and Phil Woolas (Labour's Immigration minister at the time) acted appallingly. Thankfully, the negative publicity brought against Labour by Joanna Lumley forced Labour to do the decent thing, for once.[/p][/quote]Always with a dig at labor whenever possible. This is a great story, local people taking some responsibility this should be celebrated rather than a cheap shot. Never mind its what you do isnt it. Badgersgetabadname
  • Score: -2

10:49am Mon 14 Jul 14

Sandor Clegane says...

It's actually very relevant.

In the photo above re. the local Gurkhas we see two local Labour politicians using them for a photo opportunity and yet if the last Labour government hadn't been shamed into it by a TV personality, some of the people in the photo may well have had no right to even live in the UK, let alone Swindon.

You may well support Labour, but hypocrisy on this level must always be called out.
It's actually very relevant. In the photo above re. the local Gurkhas we see two local Labour politicians using them for a photo opportunity and yet if the last Labour government hadn't been shamed into it by a TV personality, some of the people in the photo may well have had no right to even live in the UK, let alone Swindon. You may well support Labour, but hypocrisy on this level must always be called out. Sandor Clegane
  • Score: 4

11:08am Mon 14 Jul 14

Badgersgetabadname says...

Sandor Clegane wrote:
It's actually very relevant.

In the photo above re. the local Gurkhas we see two local Labour politicians using them for a photo opportunity and yet if the last Labour government hadn't been shamed into it by a TV personality, some of the people in the photo may well have had no right to even live in the UK, let alone Swindon.

You may well support Labour, but hypocrisy on this level must always be called out.
You know I dont have explained that to you many times,,,,well not you X, ringer or one of your multiple sing ons.
[quote][p][bold]Sandor Clegane[/bold] wrote: It's actually very relevant. In the photo above re. the local Gurkhas we see two local Labour politicians using them for a photo opportunity and yet if the last Labour government hadn't been shamed into it by a TV personality, some of the people in the photo may well have had no right to even live in the UK, let alone Swindon. You may well support Labour, but hypocrisy on this level must always be called out.[/p][/quote]You know I dont have explained that to you many times,,,,well not you X, ringer or one of your multiple sing ons. Badgersgetabadname
  • Score: -1

7:13pm Mon 14 Jul 14

Cooler says...

Having served alongside the Gurkhas in two wars I agree we did 'the dirty' on them but it wasn't the right of residency in the UK. That was never part of the deal when the Gurkhas signed up.

The dirty was the closure of the British Military Hospital in Dharhan in Nepal where Gurkhas and their dependents could receive medical treatment, sometimes after being carried for days through the mountains.

The value of high quality medical care in Nepal - priceless.
Having served alongside the Gurkhas in two wars I agree we did 'the dirty' on them but it wasn't the right of residency in the UK. That was never part of the deal when the Gurkhas signed up. The dirty was the closure of the British Military Hospital in Dharhan in Nepal where Gurkhas and their dependents could receive medical treatment, sometimes after being carried for days through the mountains. The value of high quality medical care in Nepal - priceless. Cooler
  • Score: 1
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