Parachute Regiment Association Return to Prested
Here at Prested we host dozens of annual get togethers, but this year The Parachute Regiment Association return to Prested. We host many different groups from turkey growers to book clubs and it’s always a treat to see the look of joy on guest’s faces as they come into contact with people they may possibly have not seen for 12 months.
This was especially true recently when we welcomed the Parachute Regimental Association East Anglian Branch here to host their annual luncheon. Members came from Colchester, Tiptree, Ipswich and Chelmsford for the event, which was covered in the local press (see below).
It was especially poignant for many as Prested was commissioned by the War office for use as a military hospital for several years, and it is believed to have helped many members of the parachute regiment, nursing them back to health following the injuries of war. Though none of those present were actually patients at Prested, the ex-servicemen remembered tales of comrades who hadn’t faired so well and who had been treated here.
Ron Hill, Chairman of the association, said “One story which is always told is that of the involvement of many local glider pilots in the battle of Arnhem. One evening in September 1944 a huge number of gliders were glimpsed on the airstrip at nearby Birch. The next morning they were all gone – it was top secret at the time but we believe they were involved in the Battle of Arnhem, and the wounded ended up back at Prested”. “It’s great to be back here, 73 years on” continued Ron.
36 former soldiers, some of whom saw active service during WW2 came to lunch and we consider it a privilege to have hosted their annual celebration.
Gentlemen, we salute you, and look forward to welcoming you back again next year!