Tuesday, 6 October 2009

38 Engineer Regiment receive great welcome home

Thousands of people lined the streets of Antrim, Northern Ireland last Saturday to welcome back the soldiers of 38 Engineer Regiment from their six-month tour in Afghanistan.

Over 400 soldiers marched to their base at Maserene Barracks following a private civic event at the town's Antrim Forum leisure centre.

The soldiers - who as part of the Royal Engineers Corps -have the Freedom of the Borough - were greeted by rapturous applause and cheers from the crowd as they made their way along the short route from Antrim Forum to their base on the Randalstown Road.

Following the parade, the soldiers were presented with their operational medals at a ceremony in the barracks.

In their six-month tour of duty, 38 Engineer Regiment was involved in almost every military operation British forces undertook in the region, including the high-profile Operation Panther's Claw.

CO Lt Col Roger Lewis said: "Sandy, sweaty, dirty, dangerous and bloomin' hot just about sums up life in Afghanistan during the last six months. It takes men and women of genuine character and real fortitude to stick to a task as daunting as the one we have faced since March and I am immensely proud of each and every officer and soldier that has dealt with adversity head on."