Area Committees updated face-to-face

October 27, 2022

The Highland RFCA Southern, Northern and Eastern Area Committee members gathered face-to-face during October.  

The HRFCA membership is geographically divided into three Area Committees. The members include Armed Forces and Veteran champions as well as the Heads of the Service Cadets and the Armed Forces units in the Highlands and Islands area. The Committees typically meet annually to network and discuss any relevant challenges, developments, achievements and future plans. 

The Southern Area Committee Meeting took place on October 6 at the 7th Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland (7 SCOTS) Headquarters at Forthside Army Reserve Centre in Stirling.

Southern Area members networking ahead of the meeting.

This was the first meeting led by the new Southern Area Chair, Captain (Retd) Chris Smith. STEM Employer Representative Member, Major (Retd) Wendy Findlay, was also introduced as the new Vice Chair. Both were elected at the Annual Association Meeting (AAM) on March 26.

After the meeting, Armed Forces Covenant signatory, Hazelnuts Catering, treated the attendees to a light supper.

C Company 7 SCOTS hosted the Northern Area Committee Meeting on October 11 at the Army Reserve Centre in Elgin. The Northern Area Vice Chair, Major (Retd) Alec Rose, chaired the meeting on behalf of Chair Commodore (Retd) Angus Ross. HRFCA Deputy Chief Executive, Lieutenant Colonel (Retd) Andrew Macnaughton, updated the members on key changes since the AAM on behalf of Chief Executive Brigadier (Retd) Mark Dodson who had prior commitments.

Northern Area Representative Member and Aberdeenshire Council HR Manager, Ms Glenda Gray, shared her personal involvement with Operation Unicorn. She reflected on the unforgettable, moving experience as a member of Aberdeenshire Council’s task force at Balmoral Estate in September.

One of the speakers, Aberdeenshire Council Internal Auditor Mr Graeme Flood, joined the meeting virtually via Zoom to give a short presentation on RAF Reserves Lossiemouth. He discussed his career as an RAF Reservist, the benefits and the support given to him by his employer, Aberdeenshire Council. The Council is one of the Armed Forces Covenant signatories and Defence Employer Recognition Scheme Gold Award holders in the HRFCA-area.

Afterwards, Major (Retd) Rose held a presentation on the history and tradition of Cadet and Reserves Piping and Drumming, quizzing the members on songs and drawing on his personal experience. The Officer Commanding of C Company 7 SCOTS, Major Malcolm Dalzel-Job, delivered a presentation last, delving into the vital role of engagement from an Army Reservist’s perspective.  

Major Dalzel-Job presenting to the Northern Area Committee.

Elgin-based The Deli Next Door provided lunch while the members seized the opportunity to network.

Last but not least, the Eastern Area Committee Meeting was facilitated by Angus and Dundee Battalion Army Cadet Force at their Headquarters at Barry Buddon Training Camp on October 18. The Eastern Area Chair, Colonel (Retd) Jim Kinloch, led the meeting.

The Eastern Area Committee gathered for the meeting.

HRFCA Regional Employer Engagement Director (REED) and second-in-command of 154 (Scottish) Regiment RLC, Major Ray Watt, shared the successes as well as the trials and tribulations of the Regiment’s 15-day Annual Continuous Training exercise in Germany in September.

Maj Watt (left) presenting to the Eastern Area Committee, including HRFCA Chair Captain (Retd) Nick Dorman, Brigadier (Retd) Dodson and Colonel (Retd) Kinloch (right).

Hazelnuts Catering was on hand again to fuel the members. At the end of the evening, Brigadier (Retd) Dodson presented the owner, Hazel McFadzean, with the Defence Employer Recognition Scheme Bronze Award.

Hazelnuts Catering serving a delicious supper to the members.

HRFCA members will gather next at the AAM on 25 March 2023.