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 Pinewood Camp
 
3 Base Ammunition Depot RAOC 1945 - 1953 (1)
79 Railway Squadron RE 1952 - 1955 (2)
32 Armoured Workshop REME 1953 - 1961 (3)
59 Station Workshop REME 1961 - 1978 (4)
HQ 1 Armd Div Column RASC + 112 Coy RASC 1961 - 1965 (5)
HQ 1 Armd Div Tpt Regt RCT + 12 Sqn RCT 1965 - ?? (5)
45 Support Sqaudron RE ?? - 199? (6)
 
(1) Relocated to new facilities built at Bracht.
(2) Used the rail network for training purposes, do not know if a permanent element was based at Liebenau.
(3) Moved to Fallingbostal and were absorbed by 7 Armoured Wokshop REME.
(4) Station Workshop formed using the Civilian Detachment of 32 Armd Wksp. Provided 3rd line (in depth) support to the 1 Armd Div units in the Celle/Hohne areas.
(5) Change of title on formation of Royal Corps of Transport, unsure of dates and subsequent moves. 1 Div Tpt Regt were in Munsterlager in 1984.
(6) Sub unit of 21 Engineer Regiment based in Nienburg.
 

As can be seen here, the camp does not have the bearing that is usually found at a military establishment.

Courtesy of Bob Gregory
 
This camp was like no other barracks occupied by the British Forces. All the buildings were built in a rustic style to look like a typical large farming complex, there was no square, no vehicle park, garages or repair facilities. The living accommodation looked like small semi-detached houses, the communal facilities were grouped close to the main entrance which was only big enough for a 4 tonner. Many of the living blocks became married quarters especially those along the main road outside the camp entrance.
 Bob Gregory

 Courtesy of Bob Gregory
 
I first went to Pinewood Camp in 1962 and left in 1967. Had 5 great years starting with National Service guys giving us rip about being regular soldiers. They were forced into an extra 6 months service in 1963 they did not like that. We paraded every morning and marched up to garages up at 69 Station Workshops and then again at lunch time and at the end of the day. In 1965 we had a parade to rebadge RASC to RCT on the football field. In 1964 wee got the Stalwarts for army trials and 1965 they came into the other Army units. Great times then; off road and swimming in the Weser and Hameln. It was a great place out in the sticks.
Mr Jock Aitken BEM
 
I was at Pinewood Camp, Liebenau in 1960 with 32 Armd Wksp REME. As you went past the arch/entry, on the left were a series of stores and workshops. A lovely guy named Otto was the cobbler, who was unfortunate enough to have a club foot. The guardroom was within the arch, which even at that time still had some Nazi Wehrmacht slogans and symbols painted on the arch ceiling. We had a large MSO unit stationed there as a guard, supposedly because of the underground ammunition factory to the rear of the camp. Rumour had it that the ammunition had become so run down it posed a danger to the local area. I was 19, now 66. Still seems like yesterday. 
Mr Mike Payne

 Courtesy of Bob Gregory
 
I joined 12 Company RASC in August 1964. George Aitken was my Section Cpl in "A" Platoon (see paragraph above). My time at 12 was one of the most memorable in my 25 years service. We were lucky enough to have the MK1 Stalwart and we were never really in camp, but when we were there it was like being at home, there was a great atmosphere within that arched entrance.
It was unique as a camp and unique as a Unit. I think everyone that has ever served there will always want to return. I know I have always wanted to. Last week (April 21st 2008) George Aitken made the trip from his home in Kinross to my home on the South Coast. We had both been posted away from 12 in 1967 and we had never been in touch since. The meeting was the result of a chance communication on "Waggoners" last October. When we met last week at the Railway Station it was as if the last 41 years had never happened. Names that I remember from those far off days in 12 Squadron are as follows. Harry the Black (Ssgt). Barry Challinor (Dvr). Andy Apps (Lcpl). Terry Byrnes (Lcpl). Taff DeFluct (Cpl). George Aitken (Lcpl).
Below is the press report in my local paper. I hope that this sort of story can be made as a result of your own Web page:
 
Reunited after 42 years thanks to "Waggoners"
SINGING the praises of the internet are two ex servicemen who met in Bexhill last week, forty two years after they last saw each other, thanks to the 'Waggoners' website. Chris Gadsden, 61 and George Aitken B.E.M, 63 served three years together in Leibenau, Germany, at what had once been Hitler's 'Master Race' Camp, in the 60's. Chris was a young 17 year old private in 1964 when he found himself stationed in the same platoon as Lance Corporal George Aitken, with the Royal Army Service Corps (RASC) 12 Company. Chris said: "I was very shy back then but 12 company was like a small community that thrived on its closeness between those that served there, and it was a unique experience." George was Chris's senior ranking officer, who Chris describes as being, "a hard man, but by the same token, a fair man." He added: "I was always dropping myself in the nasty smelly stuff but George had his own way of dealing with the likes of me - a little whisper in the ear most of the time - and if that didn't work it was down to the gym for a little spar in the boxing ring. George took me under his wing and helped turn me into the man I am today." George took up the story: "It was one of my tasks in life to teach the quiet, shy Chris the ways of the regular army. I was a few years older than him and back then things were different to how they are today, these lads had to be taught quickly that they were the fighting force that in the case of war, England would depend on them. There was no easy way, if they stepped out of line they were taught a hard lesson. I think Chris landed up in the boxing ring on a couple of occasions, to be guided by the finer arts of man management."
They became firm friends but in 1967, they parted company, went their separate ways and lost all contact. Chris returned to England, and spent the next twenty years being posted to various locations around the world, which included time in Northern Ireland, and was eventually discharged in 1987. Meanwhile George married his Danish wife Inger, who he met whilst serving in Germany; they had a Son, Christian followed by two grandchildren.
In 1983 George was presented with a British Empire Medal, having been recognised by the Queens Birthday Honours List, and continued serving in the army until his discharge in 1986 when he and his family settled in Kinross, Scotland.
Chris, who is married to Marcia with two children aged four and six, had various jobs after leaving the army but was disabled in 2005 when his leg "collapsed" and he had to have a knee replacement. This left him with time on his hands and he discovered the 'Wicked Kippers' internet cafe close to his home in Bexhill and, with the help of owner Bob, in September last year he found the 'Waggoners' website' (an association formed of the Royal Corps of Transport, RASC and the Royal Logistics Corps) and Chris eagerly began searching for anyone he had served with in the 60's. He said: "It's like anything in life if you have the time and patience things start to happen. I looked at pictures other 'Waggoners' had posted on the forums and there was a picture of George and I knew I just had to make contact with him." He promptly sent George an email and was delighted when a few days later he received a reply. George said: "I'd only just discovered the internet world and it was so nice to receive an email from Chris. The last time I'd seen him all those years ago he was a young, shy guy."
After months of communicating with each other via emails, George made the journey to Bexhill where he has been a guest at Chris and Marcia's home and, he will be returning the favour when Chris takes his family to visit George's home later in the year. George added: "Forty two years have faded away, we are in each others company and it seems like only yesterday that we were together, thanks to the power of the Internet and Waggoners." For more information on Waggoners visit the website at: www.waggoners.co.uk
Original Article by Lynda Turner of the Bexhill-on-sea Observer Yours Chris Gadsden

Courtesy of Bob Gregory
 
The first unit to occupy the camp was 3 Base Ammunition Depot RAOC who took over the storage and production facilities, these were used initially as a collection point for German ammunition and explosives and their subsequent destruction. This was followed by the build up and storage of the BAOR munition stocks. With the increasing tension between east and west the decision was taken to relocate our main ammunition depot to less vulnerable location. A new storage site was built at Bracht on the Dutch border and 3 BAD relocated there in 1953. Between 1952 and 1955, 79 Railway Squadron RE used the rail network for training purposes. I do not know if they ever had a permanent element accommodated in Pinewood Camp. On land across the main road from the the camp, new workshop facilities, vehicle parks, garages and a rail spur were built as technical accommodation for 32 Armoured Workshop REME who moved into Pinewood Camp in 1953. I think they may have come from Langenhagen Barracks, Hannover being replaced there by 63 Station Workshop REME. The Workshop closed in 1978.
Bob Gregory
 

 

The picture above was taken in 2006. In 1961 32 Armd Wksp moved to Fallingbostal to be absorbed by 7 Armd Wksp. At the same time 59 Station Workshop REME was formed using the Civilian Detachment of 32 Armd. In the same year HQ 1 Div Column RASC and 112 Coy RASC moved from Verden to Liebenau and took over Pinewood Camp. At this time I was a Sgt with 112 Coy Wksp, the accommodation and other facilities were vey good, the only drawback being that liebenau was only a small place and it was some distance to Nienberg. I left in 1962 for Artificer training and am unsure of dates from this point on. Upon formation of the Royal Corps of Transport in 1965 the unit was retitled 1 Armd Div Tpt Regt. I do not know when they left Pinewood Camp or where they went to, it could be Nienberg, but I do know they were in Munsterlager in 1984. The last known unit to occupy Pinewood Camp was 45 Support Squadron RE, a sub unit of 21 Engineer Regiment in Nienberg. The best information have been able find is that Pinewood Camp was vacated in 1978 but the Engineers continued to use the technical accommodation until the Closure of Nienberg Station in 1996.
Courtesy of Bob Gregory