BUOTC Evening Lecture: The Battle of Rorke's Drift

9 June 2017, 6.30 PM - 9 June 2017, 8.30 PM

Bristol University Officer Training Corps, The Artillery Grounds, Whiteladies Road, Bristol, BS8 2LG

Bristol University Officer Training Corps (BUOTC) invites all local alumni to a multi-media talk on the action at Rorke’s Drift in 1879 when 11 Victoria Crosses were won by British and Colonial Soldiers.

Charles Aikenhead, the proprietor of Rorke’s Drift Hotel is presenting a lively show on the famous action which followed the massacre of over 2000 soldiers at Isandlwana in January 1879. This will tell the real story how the Zulus were prevented from invading Natal by a small group of isolated British soldiers. It is a thrilling story so well depicted by Michael Caine and Stanley Baker in the film 'ZULU!'. This evening will seek to tell the real story.

The evening has been coordinated by the BUOTC and its alumni. Open to all local alumni, it will also offer a good chance to meet current Bristol students involved with BUOTC.

About Charles Aikenhead

Charles enjoyed a boyhood in Zimbabwe and Zambia, followed by public school in England before attending The Royal Military Academy Sandhurst and obtaining a regular commission in The Irish Guards. He saw active service in Aden as well as overseas tours in Hong Kong, Belize and Cyprus and a long stay at the Royal Military College of Science, Shrivenham.

Leaving the Army as a graduate mechanical engineer he followed a career in industry and commerce, starting a new company in 1981 as a distributor for ALPMA who were already an international name from their factory in Upper Bavaria. He headed this specialised company for the supply of capital plant for cheese manufacture and packaging in the UK and Ireland, which was handed over to his elder son in 2006. His return to Southern Africa in 2000 was to commemorate the centenary of the foundation of his Regiment, and he bought a house in Ladysmith in 2004.

As a third career, Charles built The Rorke’s Drift Hotel which opened in March 2011. As a retired soldier, he professes not to take sides in his appreciation of history.

Cost £5 students (NUS) and OC Cadets / £10 alumni

Booking information To book, please visit Eventbrite

Further information Please contact alumni-events@bristol.ac.uk for more information.