Soldiers received a hero’s welcome from the people of Bicester on Sunday as the local regiment received the freedom of the town.
Troops from 1 Regiment Royal Logistics Corp (RLC), led by the Band of the Royal Logistic Corps, paraded through the Causeway and along Market Square while crowds lined the streets and Union Flag bunting decorated shop windows.
In Market Square the troops were inspected by Bicester mayor Sean Gaul, Brigadier Nigel Allison, Lt Col Nathan Crew and Deputy Lieutenant (Retd) Brigadier Ian Inshaw. A scroll was presented and signed in a separate ceremony in Garth Park following the parade.
A pre-parade service was held at St Edburg’s Church, attended by officers from 1 Regiment RLC, Bicester Garrison, the DEMS training regiment, soldiers from 1 Regiment RLC, and local dignitaries.
Opening the church service, The Rev Verena Breed, of the Bicester team, said it was a ‘privilege and honour’ to host the service, and the Rt Rev Steven Croft, Bishop of Oxford, said the regiment was part of the Bicester community and had the town’s ‘appreciation and support’.
There were readings by councillor Gaul and Lt Col Crew with regiment chaplain, The Rev Paul Green leading prayers.
Councillor Gaul said: “It was a very moving day and I felt very privileged to have awarded such a high honour to 1 Regiment.”
Brigadier Allison said: “Saturday was a great honour for 1 Regiment RLC, the Royal Logistic Corps and the wider military community in Bicester as a whole.
“It is my hope that Saturday’s momentous occasion will serve to bring the Army and the community they serve ever closer.”