Jeremy France Jewellers of Winchester continued to celebrate Gurkha 200 and show support for the Queen’s Own Gurkha Logistic Regiment with two events in December.
On Thursday 3 December, Jeremy France Jewellers hosted their annual ‘Christmas Champagne Evening’, only this time it came with a twist. As part of their loyal and continued support for the Gurkhas, the jewellers joined forces with Hampshire-based Queen’s Own Gurkha Logistic Regiment to create a Gurkha themed event.
The three-story shop was transformed into a Nepalese-inspired backdrop, with the exclusive Champagne Bar becoming ‘Everest Summit Bar’ for the evening – decorated with Nepalese prayer flags and panoramic views of Everest.
Lance Corporal Roman, a Gurkha piper decked out in traditional tartan, drew a crowd of passers-by from Winchester’s high street. Invited guests were treated to authentic Nepalese food called ‘Tippan Tappan’, supplied by Winchester restaurant Gurkha’s Inn. Waitresses in traditional Nepalese dress worked alongside serving Gurkha soldiers to deliver a first class service. Captain Dhungana Rai was at hand to welcome all who attended the evening, and also took time to answer questions about the crucial role Gurkha soldiers have had in serving the crown over the last 200 years.
On Saturday 12 December, Jeremy France and two of his design staff, James Rudge and Emma Holloway, attended an event at The Gurkha Museum in Winchester, hosted by retired Lieutenant Colonel Paul Gilham. The event featured the presentation of three commissioned paintings to the Gurkha Museum, as well as recognising the generous donations made to Gurkha charities. Jeremy France presented a cheque for £1000 to Major General Angus Fay, a donation to the Queen’s Own Gurkha Logistic Regiment Trust that was raised entirely at the champagne event’s diamond raffle.
France says: “I spent a large part of my childhood and teenage years growing up in Nepal whilst my late father, a Royal Engineer, served two three-year tours in Dhuran, East Nepal recruiting young Gurkha soldiers. I quickly grew to admire and respect the Nepalese people, especially the Gurkhas; it has been an absolute pleasure to take part in raising both money and awareness.
“2015 has been a busy year for us and the Gurkha regiment as we celebrate ‘Gurkha 200’. Earlier this year I had the great honour of presenting Ms Joanna Lumley OBE with a bespoke Gurkha brooch that my team of designers and goldsmiths handcrafted; a professional and personal highlight.”