Friday, December 4, 2009

Prince Charles honours Notts soldiers

By Tanya Holden

After their return from a gruelling six-month tour in Afghanistan, 80 soldiers from the 2nd Battalion the Mercian Regiment (Worcesters and Foresters) have been presented with campaign medals by their Colonel-in-Chief, Prince Charles. It was a day of reflection and remembrance for their five comrades who died in Helmand Province.

FAMILIES watched proudly as the Prince of Wales presented their sons and daughters with their Afghanistan service medals yesterday.

This was the first time that the Queen's Norfolk residence, Sandringham House, was used for such a ceremony.

The 2nd Battalion the Mercian Regiment (known as the Woofers) includes soldiers from Notts, and among those collecting medals were some of the regiment's injured troops.

The soldiers marched into the courtyard led by the Band of the Parachute Regiment, and lined up in front of Sandringham House's main entrance. They were joined by the Regimental Mascot, a ram known as Private Derby 29.

Prince Charles spent around 45 minutes chatting to the soldiers and presenting them with their medals. One of them was Private Dean Housley, 25, from Heanor, who lost his leg when a homemade bomb went off during a patrol.

He said: "Prince Charles asked how I was and said he was very proud. It made me proud to get my medal personally from him. I'll make a good recovery and will walk pretty normally again."

His dad, Paul Housley, said: "We are extremely proud and can't praise him enough."

Afterwards Prince Charles and Camilla Parker-Bowles spent time chatting with servicemen and their families at a Royal reception, held in the house's ballroom.

Read the full report here on

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