WE DID IT! On Sunday 28 July at 0931 hrs a rather weary Gurkha Bhuros Team crossed the Finish Line of Trailwalker 2013. It had taken us a total of 25 hours and 31 minutes to complete the 100km (62.5 Miles) course. We were lucky – the nine hours of heavy rain forecast did not really materialize – but without our brilliant Support Team from the GWC we could not have done so well. Our last minute replacement for Balaram Ghale, LCpl Lilaram Rai, QGE, was a huge credit to his Regiment and our Brigade.
It was an honour to be with at group of incredibly determined and dedicated Gurkha Bhuros, who kept going when exhausted, injured and sore. It was also an honour, and a humbling experience, to meet so many people who know so little of us, yet do so much for us and our soldiers. We commend them to you.
We have raised over £3,200! More than enough to pay five Welfare Pensions for one year. To those of you who have supported us, our grateful thanks – and there is still time for others to show their support. What a feeling of achievement! Thank you all so much, from The Gurkha Bhuros.
We are all privileged to have close links with the Brigade of Gurkhas: three of us have served in the Brigade, three of us have been or are Trustees of the Gurkha Welfare Trust (GWT) and all of us are long-term supporters of the GWT . We, as individuals and as a nation, owe a great debt of honour to these magnificent warriors – fearless in war, strong in adversity, and the staunchest and most loyal of friends.
We four – “The Gurkha Bhuros” (the old Gurkha men!) - have joined forces for the fourth successive year to raise funds but also to reaffirm that we are determined to help any of our soldiers that may need support, at anytime and anywhere.
Trailwalker 2013 is no simple walk, but rather a very hard 100 km (62.5 Miles) non-stop team challenge across the hilly South Downs that must be completed in less than 30 hrs: it takes place on 27/28 July 2013. This challenge is a demanding test for fit young people, let alone us somewhat more mature fellows: we will suffer, but for the very worthy cause.
Please make it worthwhile - support us by giving what you can.
Our Gurkha soldiers have fought for – and died for – this nation since 1815. We cannot ever repay their sacrifices, but we can help those of our retired soldiers who need help to live out their lives in dignity.
John, 67, served in The Brigade of Gurkhas from 1966 to 2000, commanding 6th QEO Gurkha Rifles from 1985 to 1988. He is Chairman of the Gurkha Brigade Association and a Trustee of the Gurkha Welfare Trust, as well as being involved with several other Gurkha charities. This is his fourth year as part of the Gurkha Bhuros team.
Balaram Ghale (Withdrawn due to injury)
Bal, 50, joined The Brigade of Gurkhas in 1982 and served with 7 DEO Gurkha Rifle and then the Royal Gurkha Rifles until in 2009. He was heavily involved in setting up the first Gurkha Welfare Centre in Aldershot and, since retirement, has worked in the security industry. A prolific athlete when young, this is his second Trailwalker with the Gurkha Bhuros team.
Ian, 50, is a serving officer and, until promotion to Brigadier last year, was Colonel, The Brigade of Gurkhas. He was commissioned into 2 Goorkhas in 1982 and commanded 2RGR in Brunei and Afghanistan. Ian thrives on physical challenges – he completed the Marathon Des Sables in 2004 with his wife Zoe and he has competed in the Hong Kong Marathon, the Great London Swim and other challenge events. He has done Trailwalker five times (with a best time of 17hrs 50mins) and this is his third year with the Gurkha Bhuros.
Frank, 60, is a practising lawyer and commercial adviser who has served as three tours as a Trustee of the Gurkha Welfare Trust. Frank is a keen sportsman, and was a member of the Great Britain Diving Team from 1969 to 1975, and a member of the British Olympic Team in 1972. This is his first Trailwalker.
The Gurkha Welfare Trust
The Gurkha Welfare Trust was founded in 1969 to relieve poverty and distress amongst ex-members of the Brigade of Gurkhas and their dependants. The Trust’s core activity is the provision of a monthly welfare pension to Gurkhas in Nepal who have no other form of income and face destitution. Most of these old soldiers, or their widows, are World War Two veterans.
The Trust also provides a comprehensive community aid programme that improves the wellbeing of our old soldiers and shares the benefits with the entire village. Funds raised for the Trust by Trailwalker will support the provision of water and sanitation facilities in Gurkha villages. Last year, 80 Gurkha villages and some 19,000 people benefited from these efforts.
Make your donation now and help repay our debt of honour to the gallant, fighting men of Nepal, the Gurkhas.
Funds raised by Trailwalker support the work of The Gurkha Welfare Trust and Oxfam UK.