Association News and Updates


Date: Sun 8 Jun 2014 (Queens’s Birthday w/end)
Venue: Bulimba Barracks, Quarry club, The old Officers'/Sergeants' Mess (on the river), Apollo Road, Bulimba, Brisbane
Time: 1100h – 1600h
Dress: Casual

There will be a 'Sausage Sizzle' at lunch, but feel free to bring your own. There is a large outdoor barbecue available for your use if required. Drinks will be available at the bar.

The reunion is open to Ex-Apprentice’s, their families, ex-members of staff and any other personnel who were associated with the Apprentice School.  If you know of any Ex-Apprentices who may not be aware of the reunion taking place, please pass this information on.

RSVP to the address below:.

Brian Daley
1 Michael Street
Bulimba QLD 4171
Tel: (07) 3399 1300 - Mobile: 0412 721 761

FAIR INDEXATION BILL (FIB) - Government Delivers on its Promise (28 Mar 2014)

The Government's FIB has been passed in the Senate this week. This means that the implementation for those DFRB/DFRDB superannuates covered by this Bill will be effective from the 1 Jul 2014.

ADSO thanks the Coalition Government for implementing their 2010 pledge and congratulates all, especially Sen. Michael Ronaldson for championing the case, and all those who were involved in contributing to this result.

While pleased with this success, ADSO regards it as a first step to the achievement of the same fairness for those excluded from this Bill: namely, DFRB/DFRDB superannuates under aged 55 years, and MSBS members.

The Hansard report on the Senate debate will be available shortly.


Cruise News – Cabin Credits (28 Mar 2013)

I recently received an email from a retired member advising that current serving and ex-serving personnel of the ADF that are sailing with P&O, Carnival or Cunard Cruises there is a military benefit scheme on these cruise lines that provides you extra cabin credit.  This particular person is sailing later this year and will receive $420.00 cabin credit. Depending which cruise you go on, long or short, cabin credits from the agent it can be very worthwhile.  For further information see the P&O link: or email to:

The 2014 AABC Association Reunion Cruise which departs Sydney Fri 7 Nov this year is fast filling up, so to avoid disappointment book now.  If you are still interested in sailing with us please contact our travel agent in Queanbean to get all the relevant information. Contact Melissa on: 02 6299 3111.  We hope to see you onboard!

Contributions for Noteworthy News  (17 Mar 2014)

Any contributions for the next edition of Noteworthy News are due now. These can be sent to the newsletter editor, Stu Colhoun


Vale Ken Holcroft (24 Sep 36 - 4 Mar 14) (13 Mar 2014)

The funeral for the late Ken Holcroft was held  at the Tobin Brothers Chapel at Frankston on Tue 11 Mar 2013.  Ken had been ill for a number of years and had been under the care of his wife Jean. 

Norm Harris reports that the Frankston City Band, which Ken was a Life Member, played prior to the service and the RSL paid their respects at the end. He says Ken's immediate family, friends and former colleagues, which included Jim Harper, Neville Lloyd, Don Jarrett, Stan Holland and many other ex servicemen and friends filled the chapel to farewell Ken.

Ken first joined the Army as a Trooper in Armoured Corps. He transferred to Southern Command Band as a drummer and postings followed to Engineers Band at Kapooka, Malaysia/Borneo with 4RAR, Armoured Corps Band and North Queensland Army Band.

The AABC Association pass on their sincere condolences to Jean and his family.  He will be missed..... RIP old mate.

American Brass Quintet - Melbourne Recital Centre (5 Mar 2014)

Musica Viva is very excited to be presenting the renowned American Brass Quintet in two programs on Tue 20 May at 1900h and Sat 24 May at 2000h at the Melbourne Recital Centre. The concerts will feature music from the Renaissance all the way through to contemporary works commissioned for the Quintet.

We would be delighted if you could circulate this information amongst your networks. More information including program details can be found
here. We will also have posters and flyers available soon and would be very grateful if you could help us display them.

We hope that you take the opportunity to experience this incredible group during their Australian tour.

Adele Schonhardt

Sick Parade - Ena Harper Update (27 Feb 2014)

Jim Harper reports that his wife Ena is now at home from hospital where she's been since late September 2013.  Jim says she is recuperating slowly and has to attend physiotherapy a couple of times a week.  He says Ena is very glad to be at home after such a long stay in hospital.  If you wish to contact Jim I'm sure he would appreciate the call.  Mobile: 0408 039 776.  The Association wishes Ena a full and speedy recovery.


Vale Selwyn King Senior (6 Feb 2014)

Association member Sel King has advised that his father 'Big Sel' passed away peacefully last evening (Wed 5 Feb 2014) at approxmately 7:50pm losing his battle with his body.  Sel says for all of my friends who were lucky enough to know my dad 'Big Sel', he was a true character and will be dearly missed. Rest now my old mate.  The AABC Association send their sincere condolences to Sel and his family at this difficult time. RIP

Vale Merv Allis (3 Feb 14)

Association member John McGregor has advised of the passing of Merv Allis.  Merv died at 1015h on Thu 30 Jan 2014 in Kyneton, Victoria.  This was not unexpected, and after speaking with son Pete and daughter in-law Sharon they say the rest Merv enjoys now is a release from his uncomfortable recent months.  The funeral was held on Fri 7 Feb 2014 at TJ Scott & Son Funeral Directors Chapel in Kyneton (VIC). On behalf of the AABC Association we pass on our sincere condolences to the family and friends of Merv.  RIP.  See tributes on the Last Post link.


AABC Association Award 2013 (22 Jan 14)

A photograph of the 2013 award winner has been added to the AABC Association Award page.


Sick Parade - Doug Hocking (21 Jan 14)

Kevin and Judy Klein travelled to Brisbane recently with Dawn Wahlin and stopped in to see Doug and Alison Hocking. Judy reports that Doug is on dialysis now and is not well and has lost a lot of weight.  In addition Alison has had stents put in her heart.  The Association wishes both Doug and Alison all the very best and a speedy recovery. 

Sick Parade - John Hughes Update (13 Jan 2014)

John Hughes reports that he's in excellent spirits, feeling great and not a complaint in the world, irrespective of missing a limb after an operation last year. John says that he and his wife Barara recently moved into more appropriate accommodation to suit his needs and enables him to negotiate his chair in more spacious surroundings and he says more importantly be able to have a normal shower, rather than being hosed down in the carport. If you wish to contact John he can be reached on: 02 4625 9787.

2014 Reunion Cruise Update (13 Jan 2014)

aabc_cruiseship.jpgBookings for the AABC Association's Reunion Cruise aboard P&O Pacific Jewell, sailing from Sydney on 7 Nov and returning early Mon 10 Nov 2014 cabins are still available. Our contact Melissa Clifton from Queanbeyan City Travel advises that if you would love to join  us on this short cruise, but are travelling alone, she says she may be able to pair you up with someone else in a twin cabin, or possibly in a triple share.  Melissa says this will enable you not to miss out on this fabulous adventure whilst keeping your costs down!  Register your name with Melissa at or phone her on 02 6299 3111  and as she gathers interest, she will call you to discuss options. Email Melissa with your full details today so you don’t miss out!  For further information go to the Reunions link.

Update: Melissa has informed us that  there have been enquiries from members who wish to attend the reunion and are travelling alone, but would like to share a cabin with someone who is in a similar situation.  If this is the case contact Melissa and she will arrange accommodation onboard for you.

Association member Joe Costello from Innisfail is looking for someone to partner.  Please contact Melissa if you can partner Joe..


AABC Association Membership Database Update and Upgrade (30 Dec13)

Hi my name is Dave Oakley, a member of the AABC Association and I have volunteered to update the Secretary and Treasurer’s spreadsheets to a central database. Because of the two spreadsheets in use at present we have conflicting data which for obvious reasons needs either updating or confirmation, and that is where you the members come in.  Any information entered into this central database will remain strictly confidential and will not be divulged to any outside parties.

My intention is that eventually the database will be hosted in a central website location which only key Association members will have access to.
The purpose of the database is to centralise the data we hold and be able to produce reports, mailing labels and correspondence to members all from a central location.

I would appreciate it if members could print off and complete the form below and return it to me at . If you don’t have access to a computer forward to my home address: 14 Radnor Street, Morphett Vale, SA 5162  You may also contact me on or call 0438 951 738 if you need to discuss this or ask any questions.

Dave Oakley

Database upgrade form


Vale William James Baldwin (27 Dec 13)

Faye Baldwin, wife of William James Baldwin has advised the passing of her husband William James Baldwin (Jim), who was a member of our Association. She says he passed away on the 19 Dec 2013 at the Latrobe Regional Hospital, Traralgon. His funeral was held on Mon 23 Dec due to the Christmas period. She says he had been ill for sometime,suffering from Cardiac Failure and COPD(Pulmonary Growths in his lungs) and had been on oxygen 24/7 for the last 12 months and was very unwell for the last 8 weeks. On behalf of the AABC Association we offer our sincere condolences to Faye and her extented family. RIP


AABC Association Award - Student of Merit (8 Dec 2013)

The Defence Force School of Music has advised that the winner of the 2013 AABC Association Student of Merit Award, from the recently completed DFSM Group Leader Course is CPL Andrea Clifford of AAB-S.  The Association congratulates Andrea on her award.

Australian Army Band Corps Association Inc Facebook Group (16 Nov 2013)

The President, John Franklin has advised that the Australian Army Band Corps Association Inc Facebook Group has been set up to allow association members to share stories and photos quickly and easily.  It is requested that members are thoughtful and considerate about the content of their posts. 

Sick Parade - Kevin Klein (Update) (6 Nov 2013)

Kevin reports that although he's not in the best of health at present he remains extremely positive considering there is no known cure for this illness of emphysema and Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF).  He says he has difficulty breathing, but he's getting out and about when he can, which is not that often now.  His wife Judy is under a great deal of strain at present with all of Kevin's problems, but she's battling on. Kevin says he appreciates all the calls and messages from his friends and those members who either served with him or who know him by his reputation as a fine leader and musician. If you wish to contact Kevin give him a ring on 07 4152 8807.  I know he would love a chat and would appreciate the call. The Association wish Kevin all the very best and that we all are thinking of him and his family at this time.

Sick Parade - Merv Allis (2 Nov 2013)

After some health issues over the last year or so, Merv Allis has moved from Dubbo NSW to an aged care facility in the Victorian Central Highlands to be nearer his family. Anyone wishing to contact or visit Merv please contact me by email: Cheers,Tom (Jock) Martin.

2013 AABC Association Reunion Hobart - Interim Report (22 Oct 2013)

The 2013 AABC Association Reunion was held in Hobart during the period Fri 18 Oct - Sun 20 Oct 2013. The interim report, AGM report, President's report and CO AAB report can be found on the Reunions page.

Music Director Wanted - Chelsea Concert Band (16 Oct 13)

The Chelsea Concert Band is looking to recruit an MD who will progress the musicality of the group. The band is a community band, consisting of approximately 25 players of all ages and grades who play a wide range of music from popular to traditional styles. The band is non-competitive, and performs throughout the year at concerts, fetes, retirement villages, promotions etc, and welcomes any enquiries for performances. The band rehearses most Monday evenings at the Chelsea RSL Hall from 1915h till 2130h.  If you are interested please contact the Association Secretary, Kevin Noon.

Vale Jeff Walker (30 Sep 2013)

The Association was advised that Jeff 'Kermit' Walker passed away unexpectedly on Thu 26 Sep 2013. The funeral for Jeff was held on Fri 11 Oct 2013 commencing at 1530h at Gregson & Weight Funeral Directors, 5 Gregson Place, Caloundra, Qld, 4551.  Floral tributes to: Gregson & Weight, Caloundra (see address above). Serving and ex serving military members attending the funeral are requested to wear medals. On behalf of the members of the Association we send our sincerest condolences to his family and friends after hearing this sad news. RIP Jeff.

Vale Carolyn Law (18 Sep 2013)

The Association has been advised that Carolyn Law, wife of Viv Law passed away on the evening of Tue 17 Sep 2013. The funeral will be conducted at Botany Cemetery, Military Road, Matraville, NSW  on Fri 20 Sep in the South Chapel. The AABC Association passes on their condolences to Viv and his family at this sad time. RIP

Vale - Richard Gray (15 Sep 2013)

It is with regret that I wish to advise the death of long serving AABC member, Musician Richard Gray.  Richard was a current serving Reserve member of the Artillery Band in Enoggera Barracks, and it was while on duty with that band on 11 Sep that Richard died; cause of death has not been determined as yet and will be the subject of an inquest. joined the regular Army as a musician in 1975, transferring to the ARes in 2005, a total combined ARA and ARes service of 38 yrs and 2 months.  Army's support mechanisms have been activated offering the support needed by Richard's family at this time.  Our thoughts are with Richard's wife Janette at this time. 

Gordon Lambie CSM
Lieutenant Colonel
Commanding Officer
Australian Army Band

It is with a heavy heart and huge sense of loss that I pay tribute to Musician Richard Gray, a member of the Band of the 1st Regiment, Royal Regiment of Australian Artillery, who died on Wednesday 11 Sep 2013. Richo, as we affectionately knew him, was an oustanding musician who provided an excellent capability to our Band as a percussionist. He served in excess of 38 years, the majority of this with the Regular Army in the Australian Army Band Corps and remainder as an Army Rerservist. Richo lived and breathed music and always had a story about a song, a group or the latest and greatest piece of percussion equipment. His passion for his chosen field was second to none. If anything good can be taken from this tragic event it is the knowledge that Richo died in the presence of all his fellow Arty Band mates. He was not alone and was treated with the utmost dignity. He will be greatly missed by our tight knit unit but will be remembered as 'our Richo' who loved his job. RIP old mate. UBIQUE

WO1 John Franklin

8213142 Richard George Gray, late of Goodna, passed away suddenly on 11 Sep 2013, Aged 63 Years. Dearly loved Husband of Jan. Much loved Father and Father-in-law of Sherril, Barbara Dunn & Glenn, Graeme & Tania. Adored Poppy of Bryanna, Reuben (dec'd), Tyliesha, Benjamin, Tamryn & Wilton. Family and friends attended a service for Richard on Tue 17 Sep 2013 at Federation Chapel, Centenary Memorial Gardens, Sumner. RIP

AABC 45th Birthday - Message From LTCOL Gordon Lambie (Aug 2013)

45 years on, yet another review, but here we are, still punching out crotchets for Army.  As you would all now be aware, our AABC Bands sit within Army Headquarters, under command Director General Army Operations, Brigadier Graeme Finney OAM.  On this our 45th birthday, I thought it fitting to theme my message to all, and what better way to start than quoting an extract from Brigadier Finney's opening address to last week's AABC Corps Conference:

"My time as COMDT at ARTC, while certainly not being my first exposure to our bands confirmed in no uncertain terms the value of a band within a community, be it military or otherwise.  In both a strategic and immediate sense, the pathways forged by our bands into a community assist commanders in achieving an effect not generally achievable by any other single asset.   Whether in current conflict or preparing for the next, winning the hearts and minds of a community, and revitalising the souls of our soldiers are two of the greatest challenges facing commanders; our bands lead the way in this regard.  In you, Army has a collective ambassador, both domestically and abroad.  You are regularly providing individuals to the significant commemorative events around the world, and more recently representing en masse at Tattoos in Basel Tonga, and Edinburgh.  We are hosting an international Band in September this year in a joint effort with China.  Performing in Canberra and Sydney this concert series will form the main effort in a broader ADF / PLA military and cultural exchange, and the CO has just returned from a reconnaissance of Basel in preparations for possible attendance at that event next year.  Throw into that mix the band support provided to PAMS and Gallipoli last year and you'll agree your representational role over the past year or so has been significant.  In reinvigorating the support to deployed forces, ACAAP, and major exercises domestically, and by contributing to initiatives like the ADF Theatre project, you soon start to realise the requirement Army has of you."

As we enter our 46th year, it is with some sense of loss that we wave farewell to our 45th year, a year that will be the last for the Corps in its current shape, a shape that has served Army well since Vietnam and beyond.  As keen as this sense of loss may be however, it is with a renewed sense of anticipation that we now head into our 46th year, a new shape bursting with reinvigorated capabilities and opportunities.  The contemporary model and all of the new recent shiney equipment are obvious changes, but the singular most exciting aspect I'm noticing as I get around to the bands is the core of very talented and motivated young folk that are present in the bands; take a moment right now to reflect on those you've come into contact with recently and you'll know of whom I speak!   These younger gen folk, although aware of the bands as they were and respect what once was, are keen to meet today's Army and industry expectations, it's their time.  I'm not suggesting the rest of us are dinosaurs, far from it.  It pleased me no end at last week's AABC conference to note the very positive manner with which all participants approached the week and the future direction of the AAB, I concongratulate them all sincerely for getting over the hump, not an easy task!

Like many of you I expect, the Headquarters will be taking an early mark today to join with our local Band, RMC Band in our case, in celebrating our birthday.  Enjoy the day with friends, noting the significance of the day to the AABC.  Occasions such as these highlight our esprit de corps, an intangible asset that has assisted us greatly in meeting recent challenges and setting the conditions for a bright future. Happy Birthday AABC.

Gordon Lambie, CSM
Lieutenant Colonel
Commanding Officer
Australian Army Band

2014 Reunion Cruise Update - Sailing Nov 2014 (1 Aug 2013)

Melissa Clifton, our agent and contact at Queanbeyan City Travel says the Associations 2014 Reunion Cruise sailing from Sydney on Fri 7 Nov 2014 is receiving more interest each day. She says committing to this early booking period is essential if you don't want to miss out.  Melissa says cabins with an outside balcony are at a premium with a few still remaining and says there are still plenty of cabins (external and internal) available on the lower decks.  Bookings have been slow to date but have picked up over the past fortnight.  Some members have indicated that to book so early seemed unusual, which is understandable and could be because members may percieve that they have plenty of time commit and book for the cruise. The travel agency says that these type of short cruises have become extremely popular so bookings need to be made well in advance. We urge those members who haven't booked as yet to contact Melissa now on 02 6299 3111, even just to obtain information or to discuss the many options available.

Apart from your intial deposit payment of $100.00, you can pay the outstanding balance by instalments over the next twelve months. Note: If you book, have paid your deposit and some or all of the balance of the fare and for some reason you have to cancel your booking, just contact the Queanbeyan City Travel at the earliest convenience. Depending on the amount of notice given you should receive a full refund up to 180 days before the ship sails.

Further details and updates will be posted on the website as they are received.

I & K Music - Quality Brass and Woodwind Instruments (25 Jul 2013)

If any of the members are interested in purchasing a new instrument for themselves, a family member or a student, you may be interested in a company in Melbourne that produce hand crafted instruments that represent quality and unprecedented value for money.  The company is called I & K Music. I was recently advised by an association members who had purchased an instrument/s from the company that they were extremely pleased with their purchase and highly recommend I & K Music to you.  The I & K Music website has details of each instrument with prices.  When you view a particular instrument on the website it lists a sale price also, which in most cases is half the advertised price.  I'm sure you will be pleasantly surprised! The website address is:

Change of Address, Email or Phone Details (8 Jul 2013)

If association members change any of their contact details, please notify the Secretary ( of the change/s ASAP.  The association recently sent out important information to members by post and by email and many letters were returned to sender, or in the case of emails many were now inactive and had been changed.  We need your details so we can contact you.

Website Events Calendar (22 May 2012)

A reminder that members can forward details of performances, reunions, meetings etc. to be added to the  website calendar. Please forward information to Stu Colhoun.

AABC Association Reunion Cruise - Nov 2014 (22 May 2013)

aabc_cruiseship.jpgWith Sydney being our next reunion destination in 2014 we've decided to do something a little different so we've organised a three night cruise on the P&O cruise ship 'Pacific Jewel' departing from Sydney on Fri (pm) on 7 Nov 2014 and arriving back in Sydney on Mon (am) 10 Nov 2014. This is a 'sampler cruise', which on this occasion is themed as a 'Food and Wine' - J445' cruise. Passengers don't require passports as the ship doesn't stop anywhere, just cruises up the NSW coast and back.

We've contacted a local travel agency and they have agreed to handle all the bookings for our members and partners for this particular cruise. Contact details are:, or if you have any questions phone Melissa on (02) 6299 3111. If Melissa is unavailable either Jenny, Luke or Caterina will be available to assist.  Please note that the reason for this early announcement regarding booking for a cruise of this type is they book out many, many months in advance, so bookings are now open.

A deposit of $100.00pp is required to secure your booking of a cabin, of which there are a number of configurations and prices.   Members are advised that after paying the initial deposit, they can pay the balance by instalments.

Details of deck number, cabin types, configuration and approximate price, which could change before the sailing date can be found on the P&O Website, http// Next time you're passing any Travel Agency, drop in and ask for the latest P&O Brochure.

Be aware that the cost for a cruise includes your cabin, meals and entertainment. Other costs that you may incur during the cruise and need to be aware of are drinks purchases, meals in any of the two specialty restaurants and other incidental purchases will be charged to your credit card.  Duty free is available onboard, but does not include alcohol.

You will require International Travel Insurance as Domestic Travel Insurance will not be sufficient.

Further details and information will appear in the association's next Newsletter or visit the Reunions link.


AABK History Exhibition (14 May 2013)

On behalf of the AABC Association I wish to congratulate the Museum of the Riverina, Historical Council Chambers site, Wagga Wagga for their excellent exhibition of 'The History of the AABK, Instrumental in Defence', the display running from Fri 1 Mar and closed on Sun 5 May 2013. Thank you to all those people who helped make this display possible.  I'm advised by the curator Jeni Bradley-Cahalan that the exhibition was well attended during its duration and that lots of interest was shown by the people of Wagga Wagga, school children and visitors to the region. I visited the museum last month and was impressed by the extensive exhibition of memorabilia, historical photographs and stories, which covered the history of the Australian Army Band Kapooka (AABK), formally known as the Kapooka Band, Royal Australian Engineers Band, Royal Australian Signals Band and the 1st Recruit Traning Battalion Band. Congratulations!

Sons of ANZAC's Vietnam Memorial Tour - 2015 (28 Mar 13)

In 2015 the centennial of the landing at Anzac Cove will be commemorated and coincidentally a significant anniversary for Vietnam Veterans, being 50 years since the deployment of the first battle group. That deployment went on to last 10 years.  To commemorate this fact 'Mat McLaughlan Battle Field Tours' and Gary McDonald (Retd) a prolific author and historian on Vietnam will be tour leaders and lecturers at the sites of Australia's major engagements. Further details of this tour will appear in the next issue of 'Noteworthy', the Association's Newsletter. The website address for information is: The tour can be found there with contact information.

Sick Parade Page

The Association website has many 'Sick Parade' posts that are well out of date and depending on the member/s concerned some posts need to be either updated or deleted. If you're one of the members that are listed in the page please advise the Secretary of your updated condition or situation. Thank you.

AABCA Forum website (2011)

The AABCA Forum website is now active. To access the forum follow the AABCA Forum link on the menu. Please check it out, have a go at registering and adding a post. If you have any questions please contact the Forum Moderator Ralph Newman.

Change of Address Details (2012)

If any member has changed their personal details. eg. phone, mobile numbers or email address, please advise Kevin Noon, the Association Secretary at