It is 1814 and the Bengal Army of the Honourable East India Company is at war with a marauding Nepal. It is here that the British first encounter the martial spirit of their indomitable foe – the Gurkha hill men from that mountainous independent land. Impressed by their fighting qualities and with the end of hostilities in sight the Company begins to recruit them into their own ranks. Since then these light hearted and gallant soldiers have successfully campaigned wherever the British Army has served – from the North West Frontier of India through two World Wars to the contemporary battlefields of the Falklands islands and Afghanistan’s Helmand Province, with well over one hundred battle honors to their name and at a cost of 20,000 casualties.
In this talk General Duffell separates fact and myth and recounts something of the history, character and spirit of these loyal and dedicated soldiers seen through the prism of his own service and campaigning as a regular officer in the 2nd King Edward VII’s Own Gurkha Rifles, as the Brigade of Gurkhas Major General and as Regimental Colonel of the Royal Gurkha Rifles.