Saint Lucia in the Caribbean
London. 17 September 2022. As the eyes of the world remain fixed on the United Kingdom, Commonwealth soldiers from one of the Army’s most multinational regiments have come together to remember Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

They are among hundreds of troops surged into the Army’s Pirbright Training Centre which has been stood up as a huge concentration area to enable the Army’s contribution to Her Majesty’s State Funeral.

That task – away from the glare of cameras in central London – is the job of 27 Regiment Royal Logistics Corps (27 RLC) and is a crucial component in making sure the behind-the-scenes planning and preparation runs perfectly.During her reign, she brought all Commonwealth countries together.

27 Regiment RLC is a Theatre Logistic Regiment. It is currently based in Travers Barracks, Aldershot and is part of 101 Logistic Brigade. The Regiment consists of 77 Headquarters Squadron, 8 Fuel and General Transport Squadron, 91 Supply Squadron based in Aldershot and 19 Tank Transporter Squadron based in Bulford.

Recalling the moment he heard the Queen had passed away, Staff Sergeant Dlamini, originally from Eswatini in southern Africa, said: “When the news came out, most Swazis that know me wanted confirmation, asking ‘is this real?’. They were touched the same as British citizens.” “Personally, I just felt broken down. People back home are mourning at this moment,” said Private Adjei, talking of his native Ghana.

The Regiment is made up of the following Squadrons:

  • 77 Headquarters Squadron – Provides communication, catering and administrative output
  • 91 Supply Squadron – Provides the Logistic Supply Chain expertise and management of critical spares to the Brigade and deployed force elements
  • 8 Fuel and General Transport Squadron – Consists of Petroleum Operators and Close Support Tanker drivers, performing the fuel supply and general transport function for Brigade and Divisional activities
  • 19 Tank Transporter Squadron – Is the only UK based Squadron providing the Tank Transporter functionality for Army Headquarters by combining Army Sponsored Reserve and Regular personnel with state-of-the-art heavy lift equipment
  • REME LAD – Provides equipment support to the Regiment.

The Regiment is paired with reservist units 154 (Scottish) and 156 Regiment RLC.

By providing support and working with the Commonwealth liaison team, the Pirbright concentration soldiers will ensure that British and Commonwealth soldiers are ready and prepared for Monday’s historic funeral, which is expected to be watched by a worldwide TV audience of 4 billion.

Highlighting the poignancy and uniqueness of the occasion, Private Adjei reflected: “You can tell your children and your grandchildren that you were part of the Queen’s ceremony.”

This sentiment was shared by Private St Marthe, of Saint Lucia in the Caribbean, who added: “It is a great honour to be part of it. Few people will have this experience.”

27 RLC is known as ‘The Wolf Pack’ and is made up of approximately 800 personnel from 24 different nations, including soldiers from countries as far apart as Mauritius in the Indian Ocean to the Caribbean island nation of Barbados. With a diverse range of job roles from chefs and drivers to logistic supply specialists and tank transporter operators, they are crucial to ensuring the Army can meet its commitments across the globe.

Serving as part of a unit, full of different capabilities, job roles and backgrounds, has given these soldiers a unified perspective, and it is in this spirit that they look to the future.

Private Shallow, one of the 16 soldiers of the 27 RLC contingent from the islands of St Vincent and the Grenadines, another country in the Caribbean, said: “With the Queen’s passing, I hope we can keep the unity. Keep everyone together.”

Private Adjei finished the thought, stating: “During her reign, she brought all Commonwealth countries together. We need to keep up that bond. Not let her death separate us.”

27 Regiment RLC is a Theatre Logistic Regiment (TLR) and is currently the TLR at readiness should the British Army be required to deploy a Division against an enemy. The Regiment is trained and prepared to meet this considerable sustainment challenge. To put this into some perspective, when a division is conducting high intensity combat operations it can consume in the region of 800,000 litres of fuel, 760 pallets of ammunition and 700,000 litres of water a day. 27 Regiment would be the unit moving these stocks and consumables to a second line unit, sometimes over considerable distances.

Exercises: We have soldiers deployed all over the world: Ex DEFENDER EUROPE, BATUS (Canada), BATUK (Kenya), BFSAI (Falkland Islands) and BATSUB (Belize). We also regularly exercise within the UK from Troop up to Brigade level.

Operational Tours: Most recently the Regiment deployed on Operation TOSCA, part of the United Nations Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus for six months (October 2019- March 2020). We also have a 19 Squadron commitment to Operation CABRIT (Estonia). Previously the Regiment has deployed on Operations: TELIC, HERRICK, OLYMPICS RESOLUTE, GRAPPLE and BANNER.

The Regiment has a host of vehicles and equipment to ensure we can fulfill operational requirements.

  • Heavy Equipment Transporter (HET)
  • Modified Light Equipment Transporter (MLET)
  • Enhanced Pallet Load System (EPLS)
  • Unit Support Tanker (UST)
  • Close Support Tanker (CST) – Ability to transport bulk fuel and water
  • Logistic Support Vehicle’s (SV) – 6, 9 and 15 tonne variants
  • Landrover
  • Joint Operational Fuels System (JOFS) – Army in-service modular system for storage of bulk fuel.

Courtesy : British Army