Posted on July 17, 2011 by

The latest addition to the award-winning Museum of the Manchester Regiment at Ashton-under-Lyne Town Hall is an attraction which offers a unique look at life in the British Army in the years leading up to the Second World War.

Previously unseen footage, in both colour and black and white, can be viewed in the new video kiosk. The images were filmed by Lt Col Robert “Rex” King-Clark MC from 1934 to 1938 and show the life and times of Manchester Regiment soldiers 70 years ago.

The video reflects the wide variety of regimental life. It includes scenes from sports days, family events (with wives, sweethearts and children) and amateur theatricals as well as operational service in Palestine in 1938.

Robert was born in 1913 and received his nickname “Rex” while at the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst . He was commissioned into the Manchester Regiment in February, 1934, and joined the 2nd battalion at Strensall, York, serving with them until 1937 when he was posted to the 1st Battalion in Egypt.

The soldiering he enjoyed most was in 1938 when he spent six months in the Middle East commanding one of Orde Wingate’s Special Night Squads and earned the Military Cross (MC) for gallantry, now on display in the Museum.

Robert stayed with the 2nd Battalion throughout the Second World War (1939-1945), receiving command at the Battle of Kohima in 1944. After the war he served in Korea and Germany before retiring from the army in 1958. He died in 2007 aged 94.