Donkey Mail and Bully Beef
The Art of Survival
Goražde, Bosnia 1994-1995
Memories of British soldiers on United Nations operational duty in the former Yugoslavia
By Maurice Evlyn-Bufton
Donkey Mail and Bully Beef is Maurice’s first-hand account of his and his comrades’ experiences in Goražde, central Bosnia, whilst on United Nations duty in 1994 - 1995.
All proceeds will be donated to Goražde Children's Foundation.
In September 1994, the 1st battalion of the newly amalgamated regiment The Royal Gloucestershire, Berkshire and Wiltshire Regiment entered Goražde, central Bosnia. In the coming six months of their operational tour, the soldiers and officers of the battalion experienced tragedy and adversity, but laughter and camaraderie also.
Despite being ill-equipped, poorly-supported and isolated, the battalion saw through the winter months and achieved its military and humanitarian objectives. This hardship was made worse by the intransigence of the Serbians, who surrounded the town and prevented fresh rations from entering the enclave, leaving the soldiers on a traditional bully beef diet, packed in boxed 24-hour ration packs.
Before a time of mobile or internet communication, they waited patiently for the sporadic arrival of letters and mail, which were delivered by donkeys purchased by the battalion. Diesel was scarce and too valued for simple mail delivery services to the soldiers in the UK Observation Posts high in the mountains overlooking the town of Goražde.
''Fresh food can be replaced by ration packs, no diesel and you can walk or even buy a donkey. No letters leaves a void.”
“Thanks to GCF Bosnia’s strong support, my students have been able to make great progress in their English learning process.
Books and teaching materials offered by our English friends helped all of us to teach and learn in far better conditions.
We are so grateful for such a generous gift and hope to have a good cooperation in the future as well.”
English teacher at Goražde Primary School
BOOK LAUNCH - LONDON
at RAC London 6th September 2018
Armstrong Wolfe was proud to sponsor the GCF Bosnia book launch and charity auction at the RAC on the
6th September 2018.
Donkey Mail and Bully Beef captures Maurice Evlyn-Bufton’s memories, letters and photographs from his time serving in Goražde, Bosnia.
Colourful accounts and original photos from locals and fellow soldiers make this book a vivid recollection of that time and provides in-depth content and information on the 1994-1995 conflict. The event was hugely popular with over 250 people in attendance.
Following speeches from Maurice, the author, and Nihad Gluscic, a child during the Goražde conflict who contributed to the book, the evening transitioned into the charity auction.
There was a plethora of wonderful prizes, from Michelin star meals, rugby and horse racing tickets, a leadership retreat, a unique painting commission, to an operatic private performance.
The auction was wildly popular, especially our head and tails game where people could play along to win a magnum of Veuve Clicquot and a Michelin star meal for two.
It was a wonderful evening that helped to raise an impressive sum for the GCF Bosnia charity. We sold countless copies of the new book, raising thousands. With these funds the charity aims to build a new science classroom and to renovate a further six classrooms that are in dire need of repairs.
Your book and your charity work for Gorazde is a life time’s achievement. The book has historical value and is significant, its stories are very important to be told. It has great value for those of us who were there, as witnesses and those who, via your book will be able to share the challenging days of our town under siege.
Well done, a great book and thank you for all your hard work and your efforts and constant support for Gorazde.