In an attempt to foster Arab resistance to the Ottoman Empire (the large multi-ethnic empire which ruled much of the Middle East, including the Arabian Peninsula, during the First World War) The Allies began to provide Arab leaders with resources and sent intelligence officers into the region to coordinate and assist their efforts. Perhaps the most famous of these intelligence agents is Captain (later Colonel) Thomas Edward Lawrence, a British Army soldier and archaeologist, better known as Lawrence of Arabia. From 1916-1918 Lawrence led a combined British and Arab military force in raids against Ottoman positions and railways, tying up troops and disrupting the Ottoman war effort.
The force was attacked multiple times, by both ground troops and aircraft (their own air support, consisting of one airplane, being shot down during one of these attacks), but managed to avoid serious casualties, with no Gurkhas reported killed or injured. before the Gurkha volunteers were ordered to return to their battalions with the Ottoman surrender (Manhabahadur re-joined his battalion at Kantara in December 1918). These raids (and others like them) aimed to prevent reinforcements being brought up to the Ottoman front lines quickly in the event of an Allied attack and are considered to have severely hampered the Ottoman ability to reinforce their troops to the North during the final stages of the war.
Following the latest Government guidance regarding COVID-19 and careful consideration of the current situation, The Gurkha Museum has decided to close its doors to the public in the interest of visitor and staff safety, effective immediately.
The Museum will remain closed until further notice but will continue to operate behind the scenes with reduced staff on call to answer queries during this time. We will continue to monitor the situation closely and will issue updates through our website and social media channels as soon as we become aware of further changes to our operations.
May we thank our Visitors, Friends and Supporters for their understanding and support through this difficult period.