British NCO served with Women's Royal Army Corps in GB, 1975-1976; served as officer with WRAC in Germany, GB and Hong Kong, 1977-1994
REEL 1 Recollections of background in GB, Germany and Libya, 1957-1975: military family background; childhood and frequent moves as army child; education and sporting activities; question of teaching career; background to recruitment as clerk with Women's Royal Army Corps at Army Careers Information Office, Lowestoft, 8/1975, including reasons, family reactions, question of commission, educational tests, reactions to attending selection course and attestation. Recollections of conditions of service, lifestyle and daily routine during basic training at Women's Royal Army Corps, Guildford, 11/1975-12/1975: train journey; reception during bomb scare; nature of barracks room; kitting out and uniform. REEL 2 Continues: regimental number and labels; lessons on personal hygiene; food rations; preparing for room inspection; drill; lectures; question of medical discharges and re-enlistment for pregnant WRAC personnel; PT; relationship with instructors, recruits and officers; story of accidentally not saluting officer; passing out parade. Recollections of training as clerk with Royal Army Ordnance Corps, Deepcut Camp, 1/1976: reception from male personnel; learning to type; updating manuals. REEL 3 Continues: forms and documentation; standard army filing system; question of relationship with officers in office environment; modular nature of course. Recollections of period as junior clerk with Personnel Branch, Armoured Units, Stanmore Camp, London, 1/1976-5/1976: reception and accommodation at Millhill Barracks; nature of camp; duties amending armoured unit establishment charts and despatching posting orders; relationship with civilian workers; NCOs and officers; cultural recreations. Recollections of period at Central Volunteer Headquarters, Royal Artillery Base Depot, Woolwich, London, 5/1976-5/1977: barrack room accommodation; office personnel; general nature of officer duties; recreations; relationship with WRAC officer and question of commission; effects of promotion to lance corporal. REEL 4 Continues: reactions to application for commission; nature of tests whilst unofficially attending pre-Regular Commission Board course; attending Regular Commission Board at Westbury, 1/1977, including reception, story of failing command task, discussion group, question of relevance of social class, interview with education officer, written command task scenario, success of oral presentation and reactions to news of success; story illustrating problems in acting as block NCO. REEL 5 Recollections of attending Women's Royal Army Corps College, Camberley, 5/1977-12/1977: first impressions; small size of course; room accommodation; feasibility studies into role of women in army; PT; clerical training; lectures; role play exercises; changes in syllabus to reflect changes in role of female officers; question of gas training; visits to various units; absence of effective military or wireless training and effect on subsequent career; exercises in running evacuee reception camp; adventure training; participation in concert party; relationship with cadets and instructors. REEL 6 Continues: question of failing exam; passing out ceremony; leave. Recollections of period at Central Ordnance Depot, Donnington, 1/1978-7/1978: reputation of posting; role as platoon officer of WRAC including interviewing service women, administrative duties, welfare role and acting as orderly officer; adventure training; accommodation; story of meeting husband; nature of officers' mess including WRAC mess kit and guest night protocol. REEL 7 Continues: mess games; background to early posting to Germany. Recollections of period as assistant adjutant with Headquarters, 12 Air Defence Regt, Royal Artillery, Moore Barracks, Dortmund, Germany, 7/1978-7/1979: nature of barrack accommodation; reception; female personnel; role as assistant adjutant; relationship with adjutant and colonel; drinking habits; equipment with Rapier missiles; perception of Soviet threat and preparations for possible war; nature of Active Edge Exercises in operational deployments and role with rear party. REEL 8 Continues: accompanying unit as liaison officer on exercise including collecting attached Territorial officers and problems due to inadequate training; relationship with male ORs and NCOs; opinion of US units; story of participation in escape and evasion exercise, 1/1979; marriage, 1/1979; question of posting to Northern Ireland. Recolllections of perod with 22 Sqdn, Royal Corps of Transport, Erskine Barracks, Wilton, 7/1979-1/1981: background to securing married quarters as woman; transport role of unit; dual role commanding WRAC personnel and as administrative officer; reception from colonel. REEL 9 Continues: nature of posting; pay parade procedure; relationship with ORs and NCOs; break up of marriage; promotion to acting captain; running adventure training courses in Aviemore. Recollections of period as Women's Service Liaison Officer, Recruitment and Liaison Team, Headquarters, North West District, Preston, 1/1981-4/1983: role talking to school children and students; composition of unit; reception in schools; use of car; preparations; stories illustrating talks ins schools and colleges; relationship with commanding officer; recreational hill walking; question of extension of short service commission and special regular commission. REEL 10 Recollections of period as staff captain with Headquarters, Brigade of Ghurkhas, HMS Tamar Shore Station, Hong Kong, 4/1983-2/1986: background to posting; reception an competence of prior staff captain; question of divorced state; relationship with Brigadier Christopher Pike; relationship with Chinese workers and Ghurkha staff; role liaising with battalion adjutants including arranging flights back to GB, married quarters, Kukri Journal, pipes and drum band bookings and honours and awards; nature of officers' mess; recreations and running activities; marriage to Major Gordon Corrigan; nature of promotion exams, 1986; visit to Nepal, 12/1983. REEL 11 Continues: question of negotiations over hand over of Hong Kong to Chinese control and situation of Chinese civilians; effects of typhoon. Recollections of period as second in command of HQ Coy, Signals Regt, 2nd Div, Imphal Barracks, York, 2/1986-7/1987: problems with education of step-children; administrative role; welfare role as families officer and nature of problem families encountered; role administering regimental account to assist individual soldiers; accommodation; attending junior division staff course at School of Infantry, Warminster including lack of prior tactical experience, lack of assistance form instructors, nature of TYWTS, assistance form students and passing course; partial nervous breakdown, hospitalisation and consequent medical downgrading, 7/1987-11/1987. Recollections of period as training adjutant with Royal Army Ordnance Corps Centre, Deepcut Cam, 11/1987-7/1990: background to husband Major Gordon Corrigan rejoining army; question of role; opinion of inadequate senior officer. REEL 12 Continues: expanding role as training adjutant to cover inadequate senior officer; continuation of health problems; question of promotion to major; relationship with inadequate senior officer; statistical analysis of recruits' performance; news of promotion to major, 8/1989; evolving role. Recollections of period in command of Warrant Officer and NCOs Training Wing, Army Women's Training Centre, Queen Elizabeth Barracks, Guildford, 7/1990-9/1992: role running promotion courses for NCOs; methods of leadership training and character assessment; lectures in military law; nature of command tasks; quality of promotion candidates; background to disbandment of Women's Royal Army Corps, 1992; status in Adjutant General Corps including question of cap badge and increased simplicity of arrangements; court cases over compensation for pregnant women dismissed from army. REEL 13 Continues: reaction to disbandment of WRAC; question of consequences of pregnant women being allowed to remain in army; disbandment of training unit. Recollections of period as officer commanding HQ and Holding Coy, AWTC, Queen Elizabeth Barracks, Guildford, 9/1992-5/1993: administrative role; preparations for closure of barracks; arranging postings and redundancies for staff. Recollections of period in command of B Coy, Rheindahling Support Unit, Rheindahling, Germany, 5/1993-12/1994: confusion over posting; scale of responsibilities; relationship with commandant; scale of redundancies required from unit; redundancy arrangements including writing CVs, re-settlement and reassigning workload for remaining personnel; writing briefings; background to decision to leave army, 1994. Post-service career: writing unpublished fiction; research into Auxiliary Territorial Service; interest in medieval art and history; taking university history degree; role as freelance lecturer; attitude to army career.