55 Field Surgical Team RAMC

The Dhobi Mens’ Lines

It is of course only after many many years that after rooting around in the garage that you trip over some long forgotten slides that for some reason you took back in 1972  which reveal the true  cause of the damage done in the Dhobi Mens Lines.

What more could the “far from home soldier” need ? Good company, music, wall decorations, the odd Carlsberg, a glass of whisky and of course a dhobi curry. Even a bed for the night if you don’t make it back to the FST.

Brian Spice, Dhobi, Nick Cetti and Peter Craig
Brian Spice, "The Picture Gallery" and "The Band" band

The cook is using two Primus type pressure stove which were extremely dangerous should they be used with the incorrect type of fuel. For the uninitiated a Primus stove burns pressurised vapourised paraffin through a pinprick jet. The jet and its feedpipe are first heated with a small bowl of alcohol and then the fuel reservoir is hand pumped to force the paraffin up the feedpipe where it vapourises and emits a roaring blue flame. The intensity of the flame is controlled by the pressure in the fuel reservoir. This is not difficult with a little bit of practice. The fuel reservoir must never be filled with petrol or disaster may occur; witness the emaciated chap in Salalah hospital.

It is amazing what memories turn up in the back of the garage after all these years !
These photographs were taken with a tiny format Minox camera