The Garrison town of Colchester has long had connections with Military Policemen. In 1885 there were detachments of Military Foot Police ( as opposed to Military Mounted Police, an entirely separate unit with its own Promotional Rosters ) stationed in Colchester, Aldershot, Dover and Shorncliff.
On the 1st April 1936 the Garrison boasted a Section of the Corps of Military Police, Eastern Command. consisting of 1 Sgt. 1 Cpl and 7 L/Cpls. together with a Motor Transport strength of 1 Two Seater Motor Car and 3 Motorcycles for their use.
Between 1937 and 1939 there were approximately 10,000 troops stationed in the Garrison and representatives of the various units were used to accompany the Military Police NCOs. on patrol. At that time there was a great deal of trouble between troops and local gangs and both the Military and Civilian Police were called upon to sort out the confusion.
156 Provost Company, Royal Military Police was formed during the summer of 1950 when it was located in Reed Hall Lines, Colchester.
By the autumn of the same year there were three Royal Military Police Provost Companies in East Anglia, 156 Provost Company and 29 Independent Bde. Provost Unit both based at Colchester. Together with 193 Ports Provost Company based at Harwich.
There was also a Royal Military Police presence within 3rd Infantry Division based at Cavalry Barracks circa 1957/58 and 19th Independent Infantry Brigade based at Le Catteau Barracks and Cherry Tree Camp circa 1958/1970.
In 1960, 193 Ports Provost Company, Harwich and 192 Provost Company, Chatham both became part of 156 Provost Company.
156 Provost Company moved to Cavalry Barracks, Colchester, during 1962 where it remained until it moved to it's present location at Goojerat Barracks, Colchester.
In April,1998. 156 Provost Company, Royal Military Police was honoured by being granted the Freedom Of The Borough of Colchester.
RMPA Colchester & East Anglia - History of the Branch
The East Anglia Branch of the Royal Military Police Association (the branch adopted its present title in 1952) was founded in March 1947 following a chance meeting of two Royal Military Police officers in Colchester. They recognised each other only because they were both wearing the Corps necktie. An approach was made to the local Provost Company for support and the use of the facilities at the WOs & Sgts Mess.
The unit was agreeable to the requests made and we were able to hold our Branch Meetings on the first Thursday of each month at the WOs & Sgts Mess, 156 Provost Company, Goojerat Barracks, Colchester, commencing at 7.30pm.
Unfortunately this privilege came to an end on the 3rd October 2013, following the closure of the RMP Mess. Following a period using the WO’s & Sgts Mess, M.C.T.C, Colchester, we have now returned to the Cpls Mess 156 Pro Coy where we will remain for the forseeable future.
Great emphasis is placed on the Comradeship and Welfare elements of membership of the Association.
Guest Speakers are invited to talk on various subjects, relevant to the interests of the members, resulting in some very interesting and informative evenings
All serving and former members of the RMP can be assured of a very warm welcome should they wish to attend a meeting. People serving in units such as the ACC or REME who were attached to an RMP unit would be welcomed as Honorary Members.
The Branch has a membership of 64 people of which about 25 regularly attend the monthly branch meetings.
All new members will be given a warm welcome .
Please come along.
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Colchester & East Anglia Branch