Thursday, November 23, 2006

Jellalabad Barracks

This is a photo of the main entrance to Jellalabad Barracks near Vivary Park.

The barracks was built to house the Somerset Light Infantry, a very old and honoured regiment that was raised as The Earl of Huntigdons's Regiment of Foot in 1685, and traces its history back to the Monmouthshire Rebellion. The name of the barracks is due to the regiment winning one of its many battle honours at Jellalabad in 1842.

Incidentally for all you lovely Americans, the regiment first used light infantry tactics in Canada in the war with the United States and was given Light Infantry status on Christmas Day 1822 - that beats a new pair of slippers anyday eh!

The only part of the barracks still standing is the keep, the remainder was demolished to make way for housing.

The photo was taken by Nick White and can be seen on his site.


Blogger Annie said...

Jellalabad is spelled differently from what I've seen elsewhere but I'm imagining this has something to do with Iraqui ex-pats.

1:38 PM  
Blogger Ame said...

Hey! I resemble that American remark! ;-) And excuse my British ignorance...but just exactly what is a "keep?" And how come you're letting NICK WHITE take your shots for you...feeling a little bit lazy? That's not KOSHER in DP Bloggerville ya know?! LOL!

10:58 AM  
Blogger Mountainboy said...

Hey Annie,

It's an old battle honour of the local regiment, and guess what - they are back there again!

Not good.

Ame a keep is the most heavily defended part of a castle, somewhere to retreat to when things go pear shaped!

1:37 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jellalabad is in two parts. The set of buildings behind these gates, and another few buildings about 2 mins walk away. I live in Jellalabad Court.

7:41 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Keep was once my home, my bedroom faced out on Vivary Park on the 3rd floor. The kitchen and living room was on the top floor. My (ex) husband still lives there!

It is a fascinating building! With prison cells, guard rooms, water towers, turrets, the lots..

Its called The Keep because the majority of the arsenal, equipment, etc was kept there.

Note to Nick White - you could have taken more flattering photos of the building from the park.
And to include those white concrete blocks??!? - I helped place them there!

5:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anonymous, has it effectively become a place to live in the end? I empathise with you.

3:01 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I used to work at Jellalabad between 1984 qnd 87 when it was a Regimental Pay Office. It paid about half the infantry (the Queens Division and the Parachute Regiment0 and also many of the small corps that supported fighting troops (like the pay and catering corps). I think that at the time the Keep was used for stores and housed the Quartermaster.

8:03 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I lived in the first property to the right as you look at the main gate of the barracks lived there 1960/1 . I can remember the old barracks as it was, as kids we spent many happy hours running in and around the barracks and also remember going into the cells . Father was paymaster back then he came out in 1962/3. I can also remember American soldiers being there on one occasion and eating with them outside on the Grass area within the barracks dont know what they were there for though .

1:02 PM  
Anonymous Jane Co Durham said...

Hi Used to live there too Dad was with the pay corp mum worked in the staff canteen . Stll have the scar when I went to help her one day and chipped my finger . Great days . I believe there was also a gas chamber in the keep ?
Jane Co Durham

3:42 PM  
Anonymous Roger said...

I worked at Jellalabad from 1981 until 1984 when ihad completed my army service there. I also met my wife who used to woke in the computer room, great time was there also when the main buildings were pulled down,a very sad day

2:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My father served at the Barracks (Jelallabad) after the war. I have pictures of the Regiment: Somerset Light, parading through Taunton

3:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My father served at the Barracks (Jellalabad) after the war. I have pictures of the Regiment: Somerset Light, parading through Taunton.

The lady who mentions that she used to live there, I met your husband Bob(1995).
I visited Taunton, when he was refurbishing the Keep.
I hope he completed his renovation work.

3:15 PM  
Blogger anne inzsel said...

After a recent visit to Taunton I was sad to find that many of the buildings in the barracks have now gone. I served in the pay office in 1969-70. After my marriage my husband and I were given a married quater there and my eldest son was born there. Oh dear I guess that's progress.

3:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

my first posting was to rpo taunton.nunsfield camp, across a little lane from jellalabad.second time was to jellalabad,i was in the ground floor of the msq to the right ofthe gate.supingliwas

10:43 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Roger I remember you!!! My friend and I were WRAC/RAPC and remember you and Mike Baldwin well.
So sad to see the old barracks gone now....that's progress

8:02 PM  

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