PARAS 2 Watson, Gordon

Craig Robertson

Staff member
  • UNIT
Parachute Regiment attached to 5th Regiment Royal Artillery
  • RANK
Staff Sergeant
British Empire Medal
London Gazette 50361, 30th December 1985, Page 20


British Empire Medal : Colour Sergeant Watson has been attached to 5th Regiment Royal Artillery, from the Infantry Advisory Training Team, for the past 3 years. The task given to him was to assist in the initiation, development and training of a specialist troop of men to meet the new operational role of the Regiment. The formation of a Special OP Troop for stay behind tasks required the acquisition of new skills which had to be perfected at a very advanced level. He was chosen for this demanding task because of his considerable experience and expertise as an infantry instructor.

At the outset, the precise methods and techniques required for this new role were not fully appreciated. It was Colour Sergeant Watson's remarkable understanding of the situation, initiative and sheer hard work that ensured the Troop was trained and operational on time. To achieve this he elected to live in barracks, frequently working late into the night until he was sure his plana were sound. Having established how the operational requirement could be best met he wrote and planned test exercises and trials to evaluate his theories. He advised on the correct command structure and the organisation of the patrols; he set the training objectives; he was instrumental in obtaining the large amount of the varied equipment needed; in short, he was the very backbone of this specialist Troop. His trials reports, circulated to several research and development agencies, have been acclaimed by those professional bodies. The methods he developed in the course of these trials have now been accepted as the current operational procedure. The great success of the Troop on Exercise Lionheart was largely due to the total devotion and effort of Colour Sergeant Watson.

His sheer professionalism and devotion to duty has been well beyond reasonable expectations and has ensured that the Troop is now an operational body with proven methods, capability and credibility. Throughout he has displayed a flexible, totally committed and constructive attitude upon which all concerned with this work have come to rely, respect and value. There is no question but that his contribution has been exceptional and of the very highest quality. I recommend that his extraordinary achievement receives the recognition it deserves.

Place : Hildesheim and Dortmund
Date of Action : May 1982 - May 1985
How Employed : Infantry Tactics and Skills Instructor


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