Incorporating: 18th, 21st and 23rd Bns (Sharpshooters) Imperial Yeomanry, 3rd County of London Yeomanry (Sharpshooters) Imperial Yeomanry, 3rd County of London Yeomanry (Sharpshooters), 23rd London Armoured Car Company (Sharpshooters), 4th County of London Yeomanry (Sharpshooters), 3/4 County of London Yeomanry (Sharpshooters), The Kent and County of London Yeomanry (Sharpshooters), The Kent and Sharpshooters Yeomanry
The KSYA was originally founded in 1943 by serving members of 3rd CLY who had been declared unfit for service due to illness. It was known as the ‘Gin and Tears Club’ and met regularly in London. The annual dinner is known as the Bir El Gubi dinner in recognition of the first action that both regiments took part in during WW2 as part of the only TA Armoured Brigade. Bir El Gubi is in Libya just south of the airfield at Sidi Rezegh.
Since its inception the Association has been a registered charity and aims to look after serving and retired members of the Regiment if they fall on hard times. To do this it has a limited income derived from investments combined with donations from individuals either in the form of an annual covenant or one off amounts – latterly from the estates of former members or donations made at funerals. Today’s Association is transitioning from a WW2 membership base to a more recent membership ranging from those who served in the Cold War to those serving in more recent conflicts such as Iraq and Afghanistan.
The main effort is aimed at providing Support to Operations by sending regular welfare parcels to Sharpshooters on deployment and laying on functions back in the UK for families. This remit covers not only Croydon based Sharpshooters but also those at Bexleyheath from our Royal Signals colleagues. We do however continue to have a duty of care towards our diminishing WW2 membership and we do try to assist them – and their widows when they fall on hard times. As our financial base is small we work in conjunction with other agencies such as SSAFA and the RBL as well as the Yeomanry Benevolent Fund, usually very successfully.