Winter Lecture – ‘The Argylls in Iraq 2004: Some Reflections 20 Years On’
Lieutenant Colonel Jonny Gray & Colonel Neil Wright
In January 2004, The Argylls’ 1st Battalion deployed to Southern Iraq to recruit, train and deliver a 5,000 strong Iraqi National Guard Brigade for internal security duties across the south of the country. This was an initiative under the Security Sector Reform programme for the country following the disbandment of the Iraqi Army. In an initially benign environment, the mission was conducted against the backdrop of increasing insurrection which saw both The Argylls and the ICDC take casualties in many ambushes and skirmishes across the area of operation. In their talk, Jonny Gray and Neil Wright will reflect on the tour on its 20th anniversary.
Jonny Gray was commissioned into The Argylls in 1984 and commanded the 1st Battalion between December 2001 – April 2004. He retired a year later for a successful & ongoing second career in business in the USA and now the UK. He will talk from the Commanding Officer’s perspective.
Neil Wright joined The Argylls in 1994 and progressed to be Battalion Operations Officer and Adjutant, before commanding A Company on operations in Northern Ireland and Iraq. Beyond regimental appointments, he followed a less well trodden path through a fascinating series of international appointments; highlights include being Military Assistant to an Argentinean general and as Chief of Staff with both Russian and Ukrainian officers whilst working with the UN in Cyprus. He has recently returned from West Africa where he was commanded the British Mission to contend with the threat from Islamic insurgencies. Neil’s career has offered all the adventure for which he joined 30 years ago! He will talk from a Company Commander’s perspective.
Timings –All talks will take place in The Colours’ Room located in The Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders Museum, Kings Old Building, Stirling Castle. Lectures will begin at 11.00am, last one hour with refreshments from 10.30am and after the event.
Tickets – Tickets are £12 each and will be available from three weeks before the event is due to take place. A further email with the link to buy tickets will be sent out and posted on the website www.argylls.co.uk .
Free entry to Stirling Castle is available as a concession for Argyll Museum ‘Guardians’, Regimental Association members, Historic Environment Scotland members, those in HM Forces, and Stirling Ancient Burgh residents. However, all need to book a gratis entrance ticket online at the Stirling Castle web site https://www.stirlingcastle.scot/visit/tickets/ beforehand. Otherwise the Castle admission fee will be charged.
Parking- If you wish to park on the Esplanade you will have to purchase a parking ticket. Free parking may be available on Ballengeich Pass/Upper Castlehill Road.
Further Information- If you require further information, please email Andy Hay at email@example.com