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Assaye Barracks
 
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1 Div Engr 1950-1978 (1)
24 Missile Regt RA 1959/1960-1962 (2)
1 Armd Div Tpt Regt RCT ?-1978 (3)
21 Engr Regt RE 1973-1996 (4)
 
(1) 1st Divisional Engineers were formed in Holzminden in 1949 and moved to Assaye Barracks, Nienburg, the following year. They would stay here for 46 years under three different names. In 1978 the would be re-titled 1st Divisional Engineer Regiment, being given its modern day title of 21 Engineer Regiment in 1981. On the closure of ther barracks in 1996, the Regiment moved to Quebec Barracks, Osnabrück.
(2) Arriving from Wyvern Barracks, Lüneburg.
(3) Arriving from Liebenau and leaving for Dennis Barracks, Munsterlager.
(4) Comprising 1st Field Squadron RE, 4th Field Squadron RE, 45 Field Support Squadron RE and 2 Squadron RCT.
 

The barracks are were named after the Battle of Assaye, which occurred on 23 September, 1803 near the village of Assaye in south-central India.

 

Nienburg and its People

 

Nienburg, a rather large provincial town on the Weser, lies between Hannover, the capital of Lower Saxony and the Hanseatic port of Bremen. The town is almost a thousand years old, the first mention of its name appearing in 1025 AD in a document of the prelate Milo von Minden. As a settlement, however it is very much older, as witness discoveries from the Stone Age.

 

The history of Nienburg is marked by warlike events which have brought suffering to its people over the centuries, The town vas an important stronghold and garrison for infantry, cavalry. dragoons and artillery. Moreover, an engineer corps was once stationed here, but it was only mobilised according to need. Items of military uniform and equipment of various units are preserved in the Nienburg museum.

It took the construction of the Hannover-Bremen railway line in 1847 and the onset of the `Machine Age’ to usher in a new era for the Weser town.

 

The little country town whose inhabitants had lived by growing agricultural produce, including chicory as a coffee substitute and by making soap, vinegar, dextrin and mustard, became an industrial town. Its products which included bottles, chemicals, vehicle parts and adhesives, are highly rated and its pearl-catalysts, the remarkable pearls with the hardness and colour of amber enjoy a world-wide reputation, for they are exported to oil refineries all over the world.

 

Nienburg, with its numerous shops, both old and new, and its supermarkets, is a popular shopping-centre. It is worth noting that the town’s image is being shaped by the happy coexistence of old and new. Richness and variety characterise both cultural life and sport. The river and adjoining waters are available for water-sports and angling a fact much appreciated by the British families who ran a Sailing-centre not far from Nienburg.

 

Nienburgers enjoy eating well and they like a good strong drink when they play Skat or Doppelkopf, or get down to a quiet game of skittles, after a hard day's work! Until a few years ago 'Baerentatzen' (bears paws) biscuits were a delicacy in the town. The émigrée family Facompré had brought the secret recipe with them when they came here in 1791. Numbered among the favourite dishes here are, Nienburg asparagus with ham from pigs reared in Hoya; green-kale with Braegenwurst, and Sauerkraut with Kasseler (smoked pork). All of these reflect the basic features of prevailing tastes in Lower Saxony.

Contributed by Jürgen Balke



Road View - Now a police station. The badge on the side is that of Niedersachsen. This photo was panaramic and if you look closely, the three nearest cars appear again down the road.

 
1 Armoured Division Transport Regiment
 

The 1st Armoured Division Transport Regiment, whose role was to provide second line transport support to the 1st Armoured Division, had always been based in Germany. Initially the Regiment was based at Nienburg but it moved to Münsterlager in 1978 and, again, to Bunde in 1983.

 

Over the years its manpower and equipment establishments have adapted to meet changes in the role and capability of the Division. In 1965 it had two task squadrons, 12 Squadron and 66 Squadron. Later it had three task squadrons, 2 Squadron, 4 Squadron and 33 Squadron, 74 Squadron - its Headquarters Squadron - and a Regimental Workshop REME. It has a peacetime establishment of just under 800.

 

The Regiment was the first BAOR unit to operate the Stalwart High Mobility Load Carrier, the first vehicle in the British Army capable of providing intimate logistic support to armoured units. When the Stalwart was withdrawn from service, the Regiment was the first to take delivery of Demountable Rack Offioad and Pick-up System vehicles - DROPS. This new vehicle dramatically increased the logistic capability of the RCT. Its flexibility was fully demonstrated on Operation Granby: 12 Squadron, equipped with DROPS being detached to the theatre of operation for its full duration.

 

Throughout its service, the Regiment fostered good relations with the local German population and developed a close professional relationship with the Bundeswehr. In particular a 'Partnerschaft', endorsed by the German Ministry of Defence, with 170 Transport Battalion, allowed the two units to train together and to forge valuable social links. In 1990 the Regiment was awarded the Freedom of The Stadt Bunde and special relationships have been formed with the Deutsche Rot Kreuz and the Bunder Schutzengesellschaft. The closeness of these local links was clearly demonstrated when the local shooting club delayed its Annual Winter Ball until the Regiment had safely returned from Operation Granby.

 

The Regiment reformed as a constituent element of 1 General Support Regiment Royal Logistic Corps, providing logistic support to 1 (United Kingdom) Armoured Division.


Interior View

Contributed by Jürgen Balke



Rear view

 



21 Engineer Regiment Junior Ranks' Club.

21 Engineer Regiment Junior Ranks' Club.



21 Engineer Regiment Junior Ranks' Club - detailed view.