The History of The Gurkha Museum

At its peak during the Second World War the Gurkha Brigade of the British Indian army contained upwards of 120,000 Gurkha soldiers, and the Brigade remained many tens of thousands strong throughout the 1950’s and 60’s. However, after the close of British involvement in conflicts such as the Malayan Emergency and the Borneo Confrontation, the Brigade of Gurkhas began a gradual reduction in size, and concerns were raised over the continuing preservation of the history of the Brigade, which had until this point been the preserve of individual regiments and units within the Brigade.

The decision was taken to create a Gurkha Museum to preserve and protect Gurkha history. The original Museum was based in converted barrack blocks at Church Crookham barracks, where Gurkha units had become permanently stationed in 1972, and was opened in 1974.

The Museum remained at Church Crookham for 16 years and eventually its collections and archives outgrew its original buildings. In 1990 the museum moved from Church Crookham to its present location within the Short Barrack Block at Peninsula Barracks in Winchester (once a working barracks and now home to a number of Winchester’s Military Museums).

The Museum continues to preserve the heritage of the Brigade of Gurkhas, from its origins in 1815 through to the present day.

See Our Latest History & Collections

Major Donald Macintyre VC – Looshai – 4th January 1872

Born at Kincraig House, Ross-Shire in the Scottish Highlands on the 12th September 1831, Donald Macintryre married Angleica, the daughter of the Reverend T J...

Lieutenant Guy Huddleston Boisragon VC – 2nd December 1891 – Hunza Campaign, 1891.

Guy Boisragon was born in Kohat in Punjab in November 1864, the son of a Major-General who had founded what would become the 5th Royal...

Captain John Cook VC: 2nd December 1878 – Afghanistan 1878-80

Born in Edinburgh in 1843, John Cook was commissioned in 1860. In March 1973, after a series of other postings and being promoted to Captain,...

Gurkha Soldiers and the Anglo-Bhutan War of 1864-65

Similar to Nepal in many respects, the state of Bhutan was the site of a brief but intense war which involved several Gurkha units in...

© The Gurkha Museum Trust Winchester - Registered Charity Number 1169920 (formerly 272426)