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The Baker Travelogue – May 2015


Lance Bombardier Ross Baker spent time in 4 Fd Regt before finding his niche as Transport NCO at 131 Div Loc Bty. His exploits in that posting make Ernie Bilko look like a paragon of virtue.

Ross and Lynne embark regularly on their caravan odysseys since Ross retired from digging ditches in his plumbing business. They have sent in this report on their latest adventure.




His trusty old Land Cruiser having been given a decent burial, Ross tucked his canary yellow Corvette away, hitched the van to the shiny new Prado and set off North (is there any other way?) on 2 May.

First stop was Singleton where they went on a family history hunt and found farms and houses where Ross’s family had lived. 

Next stop was again family history oriented going to Coonabarabran where Ross used to spend his school holidays working on his uncle’s farm. Here they encountered campfire singers who travel the country singing and entertaining at campsites.  Lots of fun was had by all.

After that came a long awaited visit to Lightning Ridge and the opal mines.  The Black Hand Mine did not prove profitable and so the miner began doing sculptures on the walls and now that is all he does.  



          Sculptor at work on the Last Supper 


During their trip they visited the Australia Zoo, near Beerwah (QLD)

and encountered this fella who sends his regards to 105 Bty




Ross is not noted as a fast driver (except when at the wheel of his beloved Corvette)

but it became embarrassing when they were overtaken by this guy on the highway in Queensland.

Lynne’s high speed shutter work is remarkable.




They also visited this magnificent War Memorial at Emu Park near Rockhampton Qld.



Lynne took time out from chopping wood for the barbie to record Ross diligently testing the folding chairs.

                                                        The man just never stops. WHS rules!





Lynne’s wood chopping complete, Ross is still hard at work ensuring that the fire does not go out,

ever ready to call for Lynne to turn the steaks, while continuing to test the folding chairs.

This is commonly known as multi-tasking.


Thanks guys for your photos and stories. Take it easy Ross. We understand the stress. Ed.



Visiting London?



Members of the LSTA Assn visiting London and looking for good quality, inexpensive, accommodation right in the centre of London should consider the Victory Services Club.

The Victory Services Club (VSC) is a prestigious Military Members Club for retired, and serving members of the British and Commonwealth Armed Forces and located in in Seymour Street, Marble Arch, in the heart of London’s West End and only a two minute walk from Oxford Street.

Membership is open to:

• All Ranks, servicemen and women, Regular and Reserve of the British and Commonwealth Armed Forces

• Retired members of the British and Commonwealth Armed Forces

• Widows and widowers of British and Commonwealth Armed Forces personnel

• Parents and children (over the age of 18) of serving and ex-service personnel of British and Commonwealth Armed Forces

Single Membership (Approx AUD $35 per year)

Single membership is available to those who have served in the British, Commonwealth or Allied Forces, their widows and widowers. 

Joint Membership  (Approx AUD $45 per year)

Joint membership can be taken out with your spouse/partner so that you may also enjoy all the club facilities together.  Only one person in the joint membership needs to be ex-service.

Family Membership  (Approx AUD $65 per year)

Family membership is available to parents and children, over the age of 18, of service and ex-service personnel.  If your father or mother, son or daughter are currently serving or have served, you are entitled to take out family membership of the VSC based on their military service. 

Serving Armed Forces Membership  (No annual charges)

As a serving member of the Armed Forces, you and your spouse are BOTH entitled to be non-fee paying members of the Victory Services Club.  

Located, Marble Arch, the Club was founded in 1907 to promote “esprit de corps” among retired Armed Forces personnel of all ranks by providing accommodation and support to needy servicemen and their families. It amended its charter in 1970 to include serving members of the Armed Forces and their families. 

Since its formation, the Club has attracted many famous Patrons including: General Eisenhower; Field-Marshal Earl Alexander of Tunis; and, Field-Marshal The Viscount Montgomery of Alamein.

In 1957, HRH The Duke of Edinburgh became the Patron-in-Chief, and remained so until September 2012.  In October 2012, HRH The Duchess of Cornwall agreed to become the Patron-in-Chief.  With over 32,000 paying members, the VSC has the largest membership of any Military Club in the UK. 

Centenary Wing rooms consist of a range of room types from Single Rooms with Shared Facilities to ensuite Family Rooms which can accommodate 2 adults and 1 child.   All rooms, with the exception of the Single Shared Facility rooms (which don’t have Irons & Ironing Boards), are equipped with the following: Air Conditioning, Hairdryer, Iron & Ironing Board, Direct Dial Telephone, Plasma TV, Wi-Fi, which

is free of charge, and Tea & Coffee making facilities.  All rooms in this wing either overlook Seymour Street or the back of the building.  All rooms in in this wing are disabled-friendly and nine of the rooms have been designed to accommodate those with physical disabilities, with additions such as a Wet Room, making us the most disabled friendly military club in Great Britain.

Room tariffs range from approximately AUD $90 – 130 per night and in addition to the accommodation, the VSC has a dining room, lounge/bar, library and reading room – even if you are not staying at the club, membership entitles you to call in and make use of all club facilities.   

The Victory Services Club also has reciprocal agreements with a number of other clubs around the world:

Prince Albert Club – Brussels, Belgium

The Royal Canadian Military Institute – Toronto, Canada

The Union Club of British Columbia – Vancouver, Canada

The Royal Commonwealth Society - Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Royal Scots Club – Edinburgh, Scotland

Marines’ Memorial Club – San Francisco, USA

Soldiers, Sailors, Marines & Airmen’s Club – New York, USA

United Services Club – Brisbane, Australia

Royal Automobile Club of Australia – Sydney, Australia

Returned Services Association – Tauranga, New Zealand

(Access to these clubs is by way of a letter of introduction from the VSC) 

For further information about the club, membership fees, accommodation tariffs and use of reciprocal clubs, go to the VSC website: www.vsc.co.uk