Welcome Home
Thursday 4th July 2013 @ 16:53 by Max Wieland

1st Battalion Duke of Lancaster Regiment


Attention! The 1st Battalion Duke of Lancaster’s Regiment celebrated its return from a six-month tour of Afghanistan on Wednesday with a homecoming parade through Ashton.
Troops, accompanied by the Band King’s Division, left t…he Parish Church on Stamford Street at noon and paraded to the Town Hall.
The Market Square was packed with people ready to welcome them home, and the streets from the church were lined with cheering folk.
Flags were waving and the applause did not stop as the troops made their way to the town hall, where they were reviewed by the colonel-in-chief of the regiment, Brigadier Mike Griffiths and Cllr Joe Kitchen, who was performing his first duty as the newly-installed Civic Mayor of Tameside.
Cllr Kitchen who was only appointed as the Mayor in a ceremony at Tameside Council the night before, said: “I am so proud that this is my first job as Mayor.”
The parade was attended by plenty of schoolchildren, the Royal British Legion and Tameside Ex Services, as well as a party from the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers. The New Charter Academy Cadets were also involved on the day.
The people of Tameside provided a very warm welcome, some even getting t-shirts made in the troops’ honour.
Deputy Colonel Peter Rafferty MBE, said: “Ashton-Under-Lyne is a great town and we really appreciate everyone being here.
“For the army to function it needs faith in its officers and superiors, but most of all faith in its community, which you have shown with everyone turning out today.”
The parade ended with a hearty three cheers for the regiment’s return.