Trustees Appoint Executive Officer for The King’s Own Scottish Borderers Association

In the early part of this year the Trustees looked in depth at the emerging trends in relation to the Association, The Barracks, and the future. This work was driven to a large extent by the award in late 2018 by the National Lottery Heritage Fund of a Resilience Heritage Grant to the Berwick Barracks Partners (English Heritage, the KOSB Association, Northumberland County Council, Museums Northumberland and Berwick Visual Arts) to study the feasibility and financial viability of a major redevelopment of the Barracks as a heritage hub. It also recognised some of the other challenges that we face that link into this work, such as the creation of a sustainable pool of Volunteers to assist with the Museum, identifying income generating and fundraising potential, and carrying out oversight of our nationally signifcant collection of militaria and artefacts, as well as the other more routine responsibilities in regard of running the Association for the benefit of its members.

It was clear that this workload demanded a shift of emphasis in the Association, and the Trustees decided to create the new post of Executive Officer of the Association. This required not simply an adjustment to the current Secretary’s post, but a fundamental step-change in responsibility and leadership, requiring an individual of breadth, energy and experience, and someone to who the Trustees could delegate much of the on-site work associated with redevelopment options and continual improvement.

Following advertisement and rigorous interview, I am pleased to say that Major (Retired) Lance Thornton has been selected for the post of Executive Officer, and will take up his new role on 1 June 2019.

Lance (or Spike, as he is better known to many) has a strong military and Regimental pedigree, having joined the Army as a Junior Leader in 1977, being posted to 1 KOSB the following year, and retiring in 2011 having commanded HQ Company 1 SCOTS on operations in Afghanistan, He subsequently served in a retired capacity as an Army Careers Adviser. He lives in Berwick upon Tweed, and has always had a very keen interest in the Regiment and the town.

As a result, our current Association Secretary, Peter Walton, will be stepping down on 1 June, after four and half years in post. The Trustees and I wish to recognise the sterling work that Peter has done to keep the ship of the Regiment steady throughout his tenure, and particularly for his thorough organisation of many events, especially our annual Minden Day. He has been a great ambassador for us, and has played a full part in Association life, attending many WW1 memorial events and battlefield tours, and often going ‘above and beyond’. We thank him most sincerely for all that he has done for the Association and its members, look forward to staying in touch with him, and wish him the very best for the future.