Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Aussie Hero Quilts Thank You Dinner - RMC Tour by Clarissa Luxford......

An enthusiastic group of AHQ sewers, accompanied by a handful of husbands, gathered in the beautiful grounds of Duntroon House at The Royal Military College Duntroon (RMC-D) last Friday.

The afternoon started with a much appreciated cuppa and generous table of afternoon tea delights. We were joined by a good number of RMC-D staff, many of whom were recipients on recent deployments and who appreciated the opportunity to meet the AHQ volunteers.

Host Major Will Orgill welcomed the tour party and made special mention of AHQ founder Jan-Maree Ball who was able to be present.  Laundry bags were presented to our hosts as is now the customary AHQ "thank you".  

As it turned out, the Commandant of RMC (on the left)  is a recipient of Jan-Maree's from 2012/13 along with a few others present in uniform.  

Jan-Maree just happens to be friends with this fellow's father (below) and this photo was taken especially to show "Dad" that she and his son, a quilt recipient himself, that they had finally met. 


Major Orgill expressed appreciation for his AHQ laundry bag, noting that it would soon be packed in his bags as he is deploying on just after Christmas!


Formalities over and afternoon tea consumed, we then gathered on the Duntroon House lawns for the much-anticipated tour.





Major Orgill started off giving us a history of the House, the Campbell family and RMC Duntroon.

The house, built in 1825, is the oldest residence in Canberra and has been included as part of the National Estate by the Australian Heritage Commission. Overall RMC Duntroon is valued as a heritage landmark feature of Canberra.

The Duntroon Estate was a large sheep station on the Limestone Plains. Duntroon House, the family home of the estate, is now part of the Royal Military College. The property was established in 1825 by Robert Campbell, a Sydney merchant 1769 - 1846, who also built St John's Church and Schoolhouse. At that stage it was one of only six properties in the area.
A two story extension was added in 1862 as well as the outbuildings. Further changes and additions were made to Duntroon House in 1876. The house stood empty until the development of the Royal Military College commenced in 1910.  In 1902, the first Commander of the Australian Military Forces, Major-General Sir Edward Hutton, recommended that a military college be established. The government instructed then Colonel William Throsby Bridges to visit and report on the military colleges in England, Canada and the United States. As its first Commandant, with the rank of Brigadier-General, Bridges chose the sheep station at Duntroon, then owned by the Campbell family, as the site for the Military College. By June 1911, the essential buildings had been constructed, the staff appointed and the first intake of 32 Australians and 10 New Zealanders admitted. Duntroon House became the officer’s mess.

On the 27 June 1911, the Governor-General, Lord Dudley, opened the college and announced that it would be called the Royal Military College of Australia (RMC). The curriculum at RMC was designed as a four-year course, with half military and half academic subjects. Due to the outbreak of the First World War, the first intake was specially graduated for overseas service. The next three intakes were also shortened and the majority of cadets in the first four intakes served with either the Australian Imperial Force (AIF) or the New Zealand Army. Currently direct entry training for Staff Cadets is 18 months duration.  ADFA students receive six months ‘credit’ following completion of their undergraduate studies.
At the start of the First World War, Major-General Bridges was given command of the 1st AIF Division. He died at Gallipoli and his body was returned to Australia and buried on the slopes of Mount Pleasant, overlooking the college. In total, forty of the 117 Australian graduates died in the First World War - their names are listed on one of the five flagpole memorial tablets.

In 1931, the Royal Military College was transferred to Victoria Barracks, Sydney. With the new location in Sydney, the Royal Military College became known as 'Duntroon Wing, Victoria Barracks' but the college returned to Duntroon in Canberra on 27 June 1936.

We continued our tour observing the botanical specimens in the glorious gardens including many aged trees, some unexpected such as the Himalayan Cedar. 


As we proceeded Major Orgill drew our attention to the architecture and architectural groupings being the pattern of a British-style military institution with its formal areas and hierarchy of residence, their hillside setting with its bushland backdrop, the focal feature of the picturesque Duntroon House and the formality of the Parade Ground with its flagpole and guns (facing inwards!!). 



The Colonel Kathleen Best Memorial gates, erected by the Women`s Royal Australian Army Corps, commemorate their first director and are symbolic of her life and work. The gates were formerly at the WRAAC school, subsequently relocated to the Royal Military College, Duntroon and now stand at the entry to the grounds of the Commandant’s House. State Emblems also feature on the gates. 


Major Orgill also educated us to a not unexpected number of College traditions and legends including some of the 'Seven Wonders'; the bell that doesn't toll, the stairs which lead nowhere 

and most intriguingly, the room within a room which particularly captured our interest. We were 'introduced' to Casey, a 'left behind' cadet whose skeleton was found but his ghost still haunts the corridors and cavities of RMC. 


As he will never graduate, to appease his spirit, a place is set for him at every Graduation Dinner and his skeleton is present at each Graduation Ball.

The college dining room (with Honour boards and College Colours on display), the Staff Cadet Mess and the handsome Duntroon House Officers Mess completed the afternoon's tour.




Thanks goes to RMC-D and, in particular, Major Will Orgill for offering his time and for the most entertaining and informative tour. 

Many thanks to Clarissa for recording this for us.... 

Til next time..... keep spreading the word and happy stitching!

Jan-Maree

Aussie Hero Quilts Thank You Weekend - The ADFA Tour by Arthur

On Friday 13th October 2017 twenty one members of AHQ attended a conducted tour of ADFA, (Australian Defence Force Academy).
We were privileged to have FSGT “Buck” Rogers as our tour guide, a very friendly and extremely informative man.



We assembled at the round-about and began our tour by making our way down to the ‘Tree of Knowledge”. Shortly after completion of construction work at ADFA a fountain was installed opposite the Administration Building. Several years and, we were informed, many bubbles caused by the mysterious addition of detergents, plus occasional colour changes to the water, the fountain was replaced with a tree. It has become one of the most popular landmarks at ADFA.



Coming from across the nation, young men and women commence “Year One Familiarisation Training” (YOFT) which would span 4 weeks and equip trainee officers with basic skills and knowledge required to commence their journey as an Australian Defence Force member.

YOFT encompasses a wide variety of activities and training sessions ranging from basic cleaning techniques to operating the F-88 Austeyr – the first time many would have ever handled or seen a live weapon.



We then moved on to an area above the playing fields. The playing fields cater for cricket, football, netball, squash, tennis and other sports. There is also a golf course at the Royal Military College (RMC) Duntroon. Participation in sport is encouraged at ADFA as it fosters esprit de corps, teamwork and mateship.



As well as the playing fields there is a gym which is the largest Defence gym in Canberra with multiple facilities such as squash courts, cardio rooms, weights rooms and a swimming pool.

We then moved on to the library where, as you can imagine, there is a collection of thousands of books available for research and study by the students. Currently there is a 24/7 access trial taking place and will run until the 17th November. This will provide, a quiet place to study and focus,  access to the printers, copiers and scanners, access to Computers and  in-house use of Course Readings, Defence Collection and the General Collections.

From the library we then moved outside again to the School of Engineering and Information Technology building. Both mechanical (RAEME) and civil (RAE) engineering are taught in this building.




From here we went into the auditorium which is capable of seating 1200 people. The current configuration is 800 and 400. This is made possible by a removal wall dividing the seating area and the stage. As well as lectures by guest speakers ADFA has an annual production by the ADFA Performing Arts Company. They recently staged an energetic show of the Wizard of OZ.




We then left the auditorium and went to the Academy Cadets Mess. When you enter the Mess it is easy to see why it is the largest Defence Mess in Australia and capable of preparing and serving over 2500 meals daily.
Out tour concluded when we returned to the Administration building. At this point Jean presented "Buck" with a laundry bag she had made him as a thank you for his time.


Thanks Arthur

 .....

and now some feedback from others who attended. 

What a great afternoon!  Our tour guide walked us around the Campus explaining how ADFA works in training our military leaders. As we learned about what their days look like, we saw them in PT sessions and moving from one class to another. We saw pairs of training officers purposely moving about the Campus, saluting officers with  smiles and respect on their faces. I was impressed as Buck spoke to all of the training officers we passed by their first names. There are about 1000 of them!  When I spoke to him about this, he said that it was his aim to know them all.  Buck patiently answered our questions eg "why are these two young men wearing different hats?" ... "they are from a French training facility, here to experience our training". We had so many questions for him!  I was amazed at the atmosphere at ADFA!  It was calm and peaceful. As huge groups marched by, the soft, rhythmical footsteps were like music. The demeanour of these young men and women was peaceful and content. It was  so encouraging to see our future military leaders in their normal daily lives, looking so fit and purposeful. 

Sandy C 
.....

Dear Jan-Maree,

We were very impressed with our guide Flight Sergeant Buck Rogers and with the tour he took us on.  It went over time which was great.  He told us about how the recruits start with YOFT and then subsequent years of training. Buck encouraged us to ask lots of questions.  We liked the entrance to the mess hall with the displays of photos, historical artifacts.  The size of the mess hall was huge. The library was interesting. We thought the whole tour was very interesting and informative.

Raeleen
.....


Jim & I did the ADFA tour. 
It was very informative into seeing how the joint forces are now being trained, collectively. Being given some insight into the various components of each training. 
I was very impressed with the library! 

I looked at all the young faces, marching past, couldn’t help thinking, that as time goes on ,  these young men and woman will be transformed into an effective fighting unit. 
Till next time... keep spreading the word and happy stitching!

Jan-Maree

Monday, 16 October 2017

Aussie Hero Quilts Requests 16 October


Hi all

Here is the request list for this week…

NOTE – if you are checking the request list from the blog and if you receive the blog via email DO NOT try to reply to me via that email.  It will not work. You need to use friendsofAHQ@gmail.com

PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE copy the ENTIRE line if you wish to nominate for a quilt or laundry bag.  
For example….

Marvel Theme. Ironman
M
LB
1


This is really important to make sure that neither you nor I copy the wrong number which could lead to me giving you the wrong details for specific request.  If you find it hard to copy and paste please copy the line out as follows…   Marvel Theme. Ironman  M  LB  1


B=both quilt and laundry bag (feel free to nominate to JUST do the laundry bag if you wish)
Q= just a quilt
LB = just a laundry bag
F= female
M= male

Priority Quilts

The priority quilts for this week are 2A to 2E.  We are way shorter on time than I would like for these ones. They need to go in the mail by no later than 6 November. If you can help with one of these please let me know.


Post by Day

The post by date for all items on this request list is  20 November please.


PLEASE note the date and let me know if you have any problems getting your quilt/LB away on time. In fact, if you are going to be late posting it please let me know BEFORE you post it.  Also, if this time frame is too tight for you, there are options, just email me to discuss.

If there is more than one request on this list that you would be happy to do I suggest that you send me a list of requests and tell me how many you want to be allocated…. ie one of the following please….  There are always a few requests that everyone wants to do (and I can never pick them) so if the first one you ask for is taken then I can allocate another from your list if I have a list.
  
NOTE- please read this bit…. It might make some of the request easier for you…

HMAS Warramunga has just deployed. 
Her side or ship’s number is 152
I can send you an embroidered crest to include if requested
She is on Rotation 66, can be noted as ROT66
Her motto is “Courage In Difficulties”

For a nautical theme, you can include any of the above, anchors, ship’s wheels, RAN (Navy) crest, BZ (navy speak for Well done)

Australian National Flag - you can buy panels at Spotlight – ask for them if you can’t find them.

Rising Sun, RAAF Crest, Navy Crest and other badges – ask me about them, I can often send you some to include if your request needs them.

1 Squadron Crest can be sent to you as an embroidered panel to be included.

If they want some text and it is too much for you to applique I can get it embroidered and sent to you to be sewn on the quilt or sewn into it.

I can help you with football colours and logos of teams etc. Just ask me. Most of the logos are simple or you can just add team names if you want to … team colours are enough also.

Please think about what the request involves before you take it on. Google, ask questions, email me, make sure you can complete it to your satisfaction before you commit to it if possible please.

Please let me know if you have any other questions.

RAEME
M
LB
1A
Coat of Arms and Skippy Badge (both of which I can send you)
M
LB
1B
Australian Flag, rising sun, Queenslander, maroon, cycling
M
LB
1C
 I request a bag with the Coat of Arms and RAAF Ensign theme."  I can send you a coat of arms but you will need to applique a RAAF ensign
M
LB
1D
Aircraft Picture supplied - I can post it to you or you can print it yourself.
M
LB
1E
green and gold taekwondo and running theme with my initials ‘AR’
F
LB
1F
All purple, with one medium sized Panda
centered for the bag. 
F
LB
1G
Tiger, polar bear, penguin and monkey
M
B
2A
Blue, Black, Yellow, Aircraft, Classic Motorcycles, Marvel
M
Q
2B
Chelsea FC - Royal Blue and White
M
Q
2C
Blue black mountain bikes
M
Q
2D
Air Task Group, Operation Okra, 04 July 2017 - 18 Jan 2018, F/A-18F Super Hornet, E-7A Wedgetail, KC-30A Multi Role Tanker Transport, United Arab Emirates.
(needs applique of aircraft silhouette and UAE flag but I am having the rest of the details embroidered into patches.)
M
B
2E
Camping, 4X4 & Staffordshire bull terrier (any colours)
M
Q
3
Red, black, dark blue, wakeboarding, basketball, TV, travel (maybe a plane).
M
Q
4
Military Nursing theme with Kabul Afghanistan. July 2017 – January 2018
F
Q
5
Blue and White (Greece and North Melbourne)
M
B
6
Red Cross, Kabul Afghanistan, Oct 17 -  Jan 18, Colourful
F
B
7
photos of dog and Car - pics available
F
B
8
Melbourne Demons and adores his three children, names available
M
Q
9
If possible would like to see something army related with a Middle East reference
M
Q
10
Manly rugby league
M
Q
11
VB beer
M
Q
12
Travel/sightseeing
M
Q
13
Wagon Wheel, My corp - Royal Australia Corp of Transport, ECN 035 Movers

Loves of my life
My Daughter (3 months old)
My Wife
Collingwood Football Club
Being around the water, offshore fishing
M
Q
14
Fijian tribal or NRL West Tigers
M
Q
15
North QLD Cowboys NRL
M
Q
16
Superhero theme, (Favourite is Spiderman)
M
Q
17
Melbourne Storm and ACT Brumbies fan).
M
Q
18
Batman
B
Q
19
shades of blue, i.e. ocean/beach and if I could please have a little Cronulla Sharks symbol in the corner
F
B
20
red & black. He likes Star Wars, OR has a pet husky OR likes wolves OR giraffes -
M
B
21
STARWARS
M
Q
22
Tampa Bay Lightning ice hockey team. Southern Cross with Blue Background
M
Q
23
Beauty and the Beast themed. Black border, red roses inner border, Beauty and Beast in the center, or similar
F
B
24
Scarlet/Royal blue/Scarlet with black background. AUS flag (left) AFG flag (right), RAAOC symbol (centre). TG AFG QAA CQMS and AUG 17 - MAR 18 in black lettering.
M
B
25
Anything Aussie would be great, but honestly I would be honoured to just receive a quilt that was made for me so however it comes would be fantastic.
F
B
26
MARVEL VS DC
M
Q
27
Disney
F
B
28
Bulldogs NRL Club
M
Q
29
Transformers, 1985 Era Characters
M
B
30
Aussie Themed with Dogs cats animals scenic views
M
Q
31
Hawthorn Football Team
M
B
32
Blue,Red and White - Voltron, Star wars and Lego
M
Q
33
STAR WARS IMPERIAL FORCES
M
Q
34
Dogs, Flowers, Pride and Prejudice era, Disney, Bright colours, like Red, Pink, Purple and Blue  - any of the above but not necessarily all of them.
M
B
35
Blue, scuba diving and seascape photography
M
Q
36
ANAZC Theme
M
B
37
Purple
F
B
38
Red, White & Black.67 Chevrolet Camaro's, Motor Racing
M
B
39
Light Blue (Cronulla Sharks NRL)
M
B
40
Boston Terriers, Orange
M
B
41
Red and Black (Mobil 1 HSV Racing)
CAR 02
M
Q
42
NRL Broncos Theme / QLD State of Origin
M
B
43
beach/ocean related
M
Q
44
I do like the ANZAC tribute quilt with poppies and the words "Lest we forget".  I would also like, if possible to incorporate some reference to the Middle East, with sandy colours and maybe camels? 
M
Q
45
Hawthorn FC  OR Red
M
Q
46
Can I please get a quilt with an Australian flag surrounded by poppies on it with my details and OP OKRA
2017-2018” in one of the corner patches.
Thanks very much
F
B
47
The Phantom with "SuperSonicChook" 
M
Q
48
colours: stormy greys, dark blues and white. Interests: charles rennie mackintosh
F
Q
49
Blue, purple, black Disney and Harry potter combined theme,
F
Q
50
Nautical Theme with
ships pennant Number 152
M
Q
51
Favourit Colour is green and
themes either a girlie
motivational sayings theme
with cute colourful owls or
farm animals / landscape
F
Q
52
Being an English Native now
serving in the RAN, would it be
possible to have a English /
Australian naval theme. With
the White Ensigns of the Royal
Navy and the Royal Australian
Navy? Ships Crest "Pusser-HMAS Warramunga,
Op Manitou, Rotation 66" in the
middle
M
Q
53
Rotation 66, skull & crossbones
motorcycles (Both dirtbike and Road)
Ships Crest/motto, Fav Colours are Kawasaki racing green & black
M
Q
54
Batman themed with Middle east
rotation 66 on the design somewhere to
mark the occasion.
M
Q
55
Diving or perched Eagle.  Above the motto
"Defend the Weak" Middle east Rotation
66 across the bottom
M
B
56
Australian Theme
M
Q
57
Lion King (Movie)
F
Q
58
Pink, Purple, aqua colours, Nautical
theme with ships name and Number 152 plus ROT66
F
B
59
Warramunga, OP Manitou RAN
Silhouttes, Route 66 symbol
Pennant number 152
M
Q
60
Nautical theme Navy
Blue/Pink
F
Q
61
Nautical theme, with ships number
FFH 152 and rotation number 66.  If
possible an Oklahoma City Logo (NBA)
in the middle
M
Q
62
Anything Canberra Raiders
M
B
63
Drones / Owls, Navy / Royal Blue
Yellow
M
Q
64
Black with Yellow WU TANG logo
M
B
65
Coat of Arms, Ships Moto and Pennant
Number (Courage in difficulties 152) a
route 66 sign, the name "Brooklyn"
mentioned, Canberra Raiders Logo,
Star wars stuff, Empire strikes back
if possible
M
Q
66
HMAS Warramunga theme with Rotation
66
M
Q
67
America Route 66 theme.
(Route 66 sign landmarks and muscle cars)
M
Q
68