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History of QGE

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Past Gurkha Majors

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A Brief History of The Queen’s Gurkha Engineers

1. Gurkhas were first enlisted into the Royal Engineers in September 1948 when a Gurkha Training Squadron RE was formed.  The British Officers were drawn from:


The Corps of Royal Engineers

1st King George’s Own Bengal Sappers and Miners

2nd Queen Victoria’s Own Madras Sappers and Miners

3rd Royal Bombay Sappers and Miners


The Gurkha Officers and Other Ranks were drawn from:


2nd King Edward VII’s Own Goorkhas (The Sirmoor Rifles)

6th Queen Elizabeth’s Own Gurkha Rifles

10th Princess Mary’s Own Gurkha Rifles


2. In October 1948, 67 Field Squadron Royal Engineers was formed at Kluang in Malaya. 68 Field Squadron Royal Engineers was raised at Kluang in April 1950. Later in the same year both Squadrons moved to Hong Kong . The Regimental Headquarters of 50 Field Engineer Regiment Royal Engineers was formed in Hong Kong in June 1951. The Regiment moved to Malaya as the 17th Gurkha Divisional Engineers to support operations then in progress during the Malayan Emergency. The Regiment was based at Sungei Besi near Kuala Lumpur from 1955 - 1961. 


3. The Regiment became part of the Brigade of Gurkhas in September 1955, and by Royal Warrant, on 28 September 1955, its designation was changed to "The Gurkha Engineers" and its own cap badge and insignia were adopted.


4. The Gurkha Engineers were heavily committed to Borneo from the Brunei revolt in December 1962 until the end of the Confrontation in August 1966.


5. In 1977, the Royal title of The Queen’s Gurkha Engineers was granted by Her Majesty The Queen.


6. Since those early days, the Regiment has witnessed and been part of many changes.  After so many years in South East Asia as part of the Hong Kong Garrison and on operations in Malaya and Borneo, The QGE remain settled in Invicta Park and is fully integrated into life in 36 Engineer Regiment and the town of Maidstone.  The close integration with the Corps of Royal Engineers allows The QGE to play a full part in all aspects of Army life including deployed operations.

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