200 years of service

For over two centuries, the Nepali Gurkhas have served alongside British troops in every major conflict.

Time and again they've proved their loyalty and courage, earning 13 VCs along the way. In the World Wars they suffered over 40,000 casualties fighting for our freedom.

On return from his tour in Afghanistan, where he served alongside the The Royal Gurkha Rifles, HRH Prince Harry said that there was “no safer place” than by the side of a Gurkha.

A year of celebration

2015 marked the bicentenary of Gurkha service in the British Army. In honour of these renowned soldiers and their rich history, commemorative events were held throughout the year.

All funds raised went towards the Trust's work providing vital support to Gurkha veterans, their families and communities.

Gurkha websites

You can also check out The Gurkha Brigade Assocication and The Gurkha Museum websites for further Gurkha content, or visit the Museum to get a real glimpse of Gurkha history.

The Gurkha 200 Pageant

The highlight of our Gurkha 200 events was a spectacular Pageant in June 2015, held at the Royal Hospital Chelsea.

Attended by HM The Queen and with performances from hundreds of Gurkha soldiers, it was a fitting tribute to two centuries of loyal service to the British Crown.

Check out the clip below or read all about it here.

Pageant highlights

The Nepal earthquakes

On 25 April 2015, just a day after the official Gurkha bicentenary, a tragic coincidence saw Nepal struck by its most horrific natural disaster for over 80 years.

Entire Himalayan villages were devastated in the foothills where many of our Gurkha veterans and their families live.

The GWT is responding. We've already begun working on hundreds of home, school and water projects across the country – find out more about our earthquake response.

Gurkhas on Everest

In April 2015, a team from the Brigade of Gurkhas set out to make history.

Their aim was to put the first serving Gurkha at the summit of Mount Everest – the iconic peak of the Gurkha homeland – during the Brigade’s bicentenary year.

On 25 April, most of the team were near Camp 1 when the first earthquake struck, causing massive avalanches on the mountain. All team members were fortunate to escape serious injury. Sadly, not all climbers were as lucky.

In the aftermath of the disaster, the team assisted with rescue and relief efforts before eventually returning to the UK. Expedition leader Major Andy Todd would go on to win the Sun's Millies Award for Most Outstanding Soldier in 2016.

Gurkha 200 memorial service

On 30 April 2015, the Brigade of Gurkhas marched down the Mall to the Gurkha Statue in Whitehall for a Gurkha 200 memorial service.

As well as remembering their fallen comrades, they gave a message of support to fellow countrymen still reeling from the disaster in Nepal.

Expedition Arctic Gurkha

From May to August 2015, two soldiers took on a commemorative mission to circumnavigate Ellesmere Island in the Arctic Circle.

Demonstrating the finest Gurkha qualities of brotherhood, grit and courage, they also raised nearly £10,000 to support our water projects in Nepal.

Gurkha 200 commemorative book

A fantastic visual account of the Gurkhas' rich 200-year history was released in 2015.

Visit the Gurkha Museum's website to buy a copy, with all royalties donated to the GWT.