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ANSWERED on Wed 16 Jan 2008 - 12:02 pm UTC by answerfinder

Question: When was Camp Souter (in Afghanistan) so named?

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Wed 16 Jan 2008 - 8:15 am UTC

Question

probo
Customer

Today, Camp Souter, a converted fertiliser plant on the outskirts of Kabul, is the headquarters of the British peacekeeping mission in Afghanistan. Here 300 troops handle engineering tasks for the International Security Assistance Force, Isaf, which maintains order and protects the interim government in the Afghan capital. .

Camp Souter is named after Captain Thomas Alexander Souter, only survivor of the battle of Gandamack, fought in 1842. It was a chapter in one of the greatest disasters in British military history, the retreat from Kabul, in which the Army of the Indus was all but wiped out.

But exactly when was it so named?

Obviously some time after 1842 and before 2003 ...

Does anybody know?

Bryan

 

 
 

Wed 16 Jan 2008 - 11:13 am UTC

Uclue Researcher Request for clarification

Phil Answerfinder
Researcher

Dear Bryan,

I have been unable to establish when it was exactly named. It was between the time of the British Army being first deployed in November 2001 in Afghanistan as part of the NATO International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) and 7 May 2002 when reference to Camp Souter is made in the Leicester Mercury newspaper.

The camp which is now the  UK’s main military base in Kabul is based in an old fertiliser plant which has now been converted and upgraded, but in September 2002 one soldier wrote that they were living in tents. This corroborates the suggestion that it was only a recent establishment of the camp.

I have checked on the MOD site, but their timeline and briefing documents do not supply the information.
http://www.operations.mod.uk/afghanistan/summaryarchive1.htm
http://www.mod.uk/DefenceInternet/FactSheets/OperationsFactsheets/OperationsInAfghanistanBackgroundBriefing1.htm

Is this a near enough date for your purposes? The only other possible suggestion is to either contact the MOD press section, or to post an appeal on one of the forums for army personnel and see if any answer is supplied. Would you like me to do this?

Phil
answerfinder


“26 January 2004
Camp Souter, a converted fertiliser plant on the outskirts of Kabul, is the headquarters of the British peacekeeping mission in Afghanistan.”
http://news.independent.co.uk/world/politics/article126933.ece

Souter Camp referred to in this article,
“A Blue Army soldier.
Leicester Mercury, 7 May 2002, 218 words, (English)
Among the troops charged with keeping the uneasy peace in Kabul are a handful of Leicestershire soldiers. Danny Mackness is keeping hundreds of forces moving in Kabul as battalion motor transport officer. .”
Factiva.com - newspaper subscription database

“Wednesday September 11, 2002
The Guardian
Our camp is in an old fertiliser factory next to Kabul airport … We are living in tents at the moment.”
http://www.guardian.co.uk/print/0,,4497574-110975,00.html

 

Wed 16 Jan 2008 - 11:45 am UTC

Question clarification

probo
Customer

Many thanks, Phil ...

That phills the bill PERFECTLY!

Can you now do the rest?

All the Best

Bryan

 

Wed 16 Jan 2008 - 12:02 pm UTC

Uclue Researcher Answer

Phil Answerfinder
Researcher

Dear Bryan,

I am pleased to read that my research answers your question. By way of an answer I'll post the information again.

I have been unable to establish when it was exactly named. It was between
the time of the British Army being first deployed in November 2001 in
Afghanistan as part of the NATO International Security Assistance Force
(ISAF) and 7 May 2002 when reference to Camp Souter is made in the
Leicester Mercury newspaper.

The camp which is now the  UK’s main military base in Kabul is based in
an old fertiliser plant which has now been converted and upgraded, but in
September 2002 one soldier wrote that they were living in tents. This
corroborates the suggestion that it was only a recent establishment of the
camp.

I have checked on the MOD site, but their timeline and briefing documents
do not supply the information.
http://www.operations.mod.uk/afghanistan/summaryarchive1.htm
http://www.mod.uk/DefenceInternet/FactSheets/OperationsFactsheets/OperationsInAfghanistanBackgroundBriefing1.htm

“26 January 2004
Camp Souter, a converted fertiliser plant on the outskirts of Kabul, is
the headquarters of the British peacekeeping mission in Afghanistan.”
http://news.independent.co.uk/world/politics/article126933.ece

Souter Camp referred to in this article,
“A Blue Army soldier.
Leicester Mercury, 7 May 2002, 218 words, (English)
Among the troops charged with keeping the uneasy peace in Kabul are a
handful of Leicestershire soldiers. Danny Mackness is keeping hundreds of
forces moving in Kabul as battalion motor transport officer. .”
Factiva.com - newspaper subscription database

“Wednesday September 11, 2002
The Guardian
Our camp is in an old fertiliser factory next to Kabul airport … We are
living in tents at the moment.”
http://www.guardian.co.uk/print/0,,4497574-110975,00.html


Phil
answerfinder

 
 

Wed 16 Jan 2008 - 12:26 pm UTC

Accepted and rated

probo
Customer

As always ...

Fast and efficient!

Many thanks, Phil

 

Wed 16 Jan 2008 - 1:05 pm UTC

Uclue Researcher Comment

Phil Answerfinder
Researcher

Dear Bryan,
Thank you for the tip.
Phil

 

Sun 5 Apr 2009 - 8:12 am UTC

Comment

Bryan -

A somewhat late response to your query, and no doubt the time has passed for you to make use of it! Howsoumever.

As you say Capt. Thomas Alexander Souter of the 44th Regiment of Foot, a g g grandfather of mine, was one of the few survivors of the disastrous Retreat from Cabul. A British column of 16,000, (which included wives, families,  and camp followers) was decimated.

Capt. Souter was one of the few survivors who managed, against tremendous odds, to fight their way back towards India, (despite a negotiated safe passage, they were harried the whole distance), before finally making a last stand at Gandermuck when only a day or twos march from safety, (within 20 miles of Jallalabad). The whole party, including some twenty officers and forty five other ranks of the 44th Regiment of Foot, (later the Essex Regiment), were finally overcome, being killed or captured, (Capt. Souter the sole surviving officer plus a few wounded privates), apart for one, Dr. Brydon who staggered alone into Jallalabad and became the subject of Lady Butler's once famous picture 'The Remnant of an Army'. (Dr. Brydon remembered with great disfavour by the Essex Regt., as it would appear that he slipped away with the horses with some others during the night without orders. Only he of this group survived).

Like you I was interested in the reason for Camp Souter being so named. I found the MoD extremely obtuse, (I suspect because they did not know).

However I was contacted by someone who had been a British troop commander in Kabul at the time that the old fertilizer plant was taken over. He had been an East Anglian, the successor regiment to the 44th of Foot (Essex) Regt., and, knowing his regimental history, decided that Camp Souter would be an apt name, and so named it.

(I further heard, a few years later, that a party of ex East Anglians had set out to visit the Gandermuck hillock on which the last stand was made. Late in the day they were informed of Taliban activity in the area; this they though they could cope with but put off the expedition as they feared the possibility of 'friendly fire'!)

Yours Aye       Andrew Sellon

 

Sun 5 Apr 2009 - 10:02 am UTC

Comment

myoarin
User

It's never too late for interesting information.
Thanks, Myoarin

 

Sun 5 Apr 2009 - 1:38 pm UTC

Comment

probo
Customer

Hi Andrew

Great to hear from you!

I have come across your name in my researches but I am afraid that I have some bad news for you: there was a real Black Sheep in the family.

He was Mr X (1890-1970) the wayward son of Frank Thomas Edward Souter (1864-1941); the grandson of Sir Frank Souter; and the great-grandson of Captain Thomas Souter.

Mr X's mother, who died shortly after giving birth, also came from an interesting family.

Fortunately, Mr X changed his name because he became quite notorious. He wrote several books including three autobiographies, spent many years in various prisons, was bankrupted twice, and died broke.

Mr X’s name crops up in numerous MI5 and Home Office files of his associates  although, to date, his own copious files - which evidently run to twelve volumes or more - have not been released despite a request under the Freedom of Information Act.

As Myoarin said: It's never too late for interesting information.

Please contact me via my website and I will reveal more:

http://www.statesecrets.co.uk/

All the Best

Bryan

 

Thu 18 Feb 2010 - 4:45 am UTC

Comment

royalscot
User

The Hero of Gundamuk - Captain Thomas Souter born 1804 in Syston, Leicestershire, England. Married Hannah Harper (1809-1891) born in Syston and died in Lewisham, England, age 82. Children 1.Sarah Lucas Souter 1828-1856 2.Frank b. 1831 m Helena Elizabeth Cameron  3.Frederick Souter b 1835 4.Fanny Souter b. 1841-1924 m Sellon

Sarah m Sutherland George Gordon Orr 1816 Ceylon - 1858 India. - Clementina Agnes Sutherland Orr b 1848 India m Edward Doering - and later (1880) James Goodchild Wakley in London England.

 

Thu 18 Feb 2010 - 6:54 am UTC

Comment

probo
Customer

Very many thanks, Royalscot, but the information that I have gathered (on your ancestor?) differs from yours.

Captain Souter died on 10 June 1848. He was 57.

He and Hannah had also had 5 children.

Please contact me via my website and I will reveal more:

http://www.statesecrets.co.uk/

All the Best

Bryan

 

Thu 18 Feb 2010 - 11:11 pm UTC

Comment

royalscot
User

Bryan,
Since I did - not - post Thomas Souter's death date -- how could your information differ from mine? Note: there is a *period after the data on Thomas. What I provided was the death date of his wife, Hannah.

 

Fri 19 Feb 2010 - 1:03 am UTC

Comment

probo
Customer

Royalscot

As Captain Thomas died in 1848 age 57, this supports the fact that he was born in 1791 - and it wasn't in Syston either.

Their first child was a son, also called Thomas and Captain T referred to this son (among other children) in letters to his wife whilst he was in captivity. Have you seen these letters?

Also, Hannah's date of death (supported by her Death Certificate) is different from the one you have quoted.

Bryan

 

Fri 19 Feb 2010 - 1:49 am UTC

Comment

royalscot
User

Actually Bryan,

I was trying to help Andrew Sellon discover more data about his genealogy. I found his postings all over the internet asking for information on his ancestor. Unable to discover Mr. Sellon's Email addie - I actually tracked him to this site - signed up as a memeber only to help him -  after I found information posted on the Church of Jesus Christ (Mormon "The Genealogy People") Genealogy websites - about his family. I did this because I like to help people. I am not a descendant of this Souter chap, I descend from Munro and Mackenzies of Lochend. However, there is - good - news in that the Mormon researcher who posted the data I was quoting on this Souter fellow will surely find these postings one day and benefit from all the new data.

Cheeers

 

Fri 19 Feb 2010 - 2:06 am UTC

Comment

royalscot
User

Additionally, by posting the descendants of Thomas Souter and Hannah Harper's daughter Sarah - down through generations to the Wakeley and Sutherland Orr families of London, England in the 1880s, I thought Andrew Sellon might be able to contact distant cousins of his and exchange genealogical notes. I could have posted more - if anyone is interested. Some of the descendant's of Sarah are died recently and some are listed as "Living Descendants" today.

 

Fri 19 Feb 2010 - 7:09 am UTC

Comment

probo
Customer

All is explained!

Actually, I do have Andrew's email address so I will now advise him of your findings.

All the Best

Bryan

 

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