Thursday, 17 June 2010

Southend salutes the Vikings

Thousands of people lined the High Street in Southend today and gave a tremendous welcome to the soldiers of 1st Battalion The Royal Anglian Regiment.

The Battalion was also granted the Freedom of the Borough and so, preceded by the Minden Band, the 180 soldiers marched with fixed bayonets and colours flying.

The Battalion has recently returned from a tough six-month tour of Afghanistan and their visit enabled the people of Southend to show their support for the guys and their appreciation for the work that they had done out there. During this latest deployment to Afghanistan, the Battalion sadly lost five soldiers killed fighting the Taliban: L/Cpl Scott Hardy, Pte James Grigg, Capt Martin Driver, Pte Robert Hayes and L/Cpl Adam Drane.

The parade through Southend was one of a series of similar events being held in towns across East Anglia to mark the return of the Battalion from the frontline in Afghanistan.

Well done, the Vikings!