1920 - 1939: Inter War Era

1914 - 19191939 - 1945

CONSTANTINOPLE, APRIL 1920 – NOVEMBER 1921; SEPTEMBER 1922 – AUGUST 1923

The 1st Battalion moved from UK to Constantinople in March 1920 arriving on 9 April 1920 and became part of the Army of the Black Sea trying to keep the peace between the Turkish Government Forces and Kemal Ataturk’s Nationalists. They left in November 1921. However in mid-September 1922 the Battalion was recalled to Turkey to hold Chanak on the Asiatic side of the Dardanelles as a bridgehead until returning to Malta in autumn 1923.

MALTA, NOVEMBER 1921 – SEPTEMBER 1922; AUGUST 1923 – DECEMBER 1924

In November 1921 the Battalion was moved to Malta where families joined them in St Andrew’s Barracks at the start of February 1922. After redeployment to Turkey, they returned to Malta in August 1923 and at this point garrison duties and training included some ceremonial occasions.

HAIFA, 1934 – 1935

The Gordons moved to Palestine to take part in internal security duties as tensions increased between the Arab and Jewish populations. In between garrison and security duties the battalion found ample time for peacetime activities.

GIBRALTAR, OCTOBER 1934 – MARCH 1937

In October 1934, 2nd Gordons – previously based in Aldershot – arrived on Gibraltar from Southampton after a 4 day voyage. They marched to their new abode cheered on by a large crowd lining the route and with Sir Charles Harrington GCB GBE DSO taking the salute.

Accompanied by their married families, they occupied the very scattered quarters which stretched across the length of the Rock. Their prime responsibilities were guard duty and garrison fatigues with their first endeavours focussed on a rigorous cleaning and debugging exercise. They also participated in many ceremonial events including the King’s Silver Jubilee celebrations on 6 May 1935.

SINGAPORE, 1937 – 1941

The 2nd Battalion Gordon Highlanders arrived in Singapore since 1937 following their tour of duty in Gibraltar and were posted to the Selerang barracks at Changi on the island of Singapore. The defence of Singapore was of extreme importance and the security of the naval base considered being second to that of the UK. Their duties included reconnaissance, boat training, practising landings and manning of Singapore’s defences.  A platoon was engaged in the permanent occupation of Pengerang on South East Johore.

The Japanese made their unprovoked air attacks on Singapore and invaded northern Malaya on 8 December 1941. The Gordons were part of the Singapore Garrison and so were held at Pengerang, Singapore where their purpose was to defend the artillery installations, which were all part of the Singapore Fortress, with the large naval base and RAF airfields at Seletar and Tengah.

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