Lancashire

Lancashire funeral held for 'lion of England' soldier

The funeral of a soldier described as a "lion of England" has taken place in his home town in Lancashire.

L/Cpl Jordan Bancroft was shot dead while protecting a meeting between local elders and troops in southern Afghanistan on 21 August.

The 25-year-old, from Earby, was part of 1st Battalion, The Duke of Lancaster's Regiment.

His father Tony told mourners at All Saints Church, in Earby, L/Cpl Bancroft would "always be our superhero".

The soldier was planning to marry his girlfriend Lauren O'Hara after his tour in Afghanistan.

Miss O'Hara told about 380 people inside the church and hundreds more outside: "He would say that we were two jigsaw pieces in a puzzle that fit together.

"I love you Jordan and am so proud of you."

'Over-achiever'

His father said: "I think you will all agree that Jordan would have made a fantastic father with some fantastic children.

"He was an over-achiever in everything he did. If at first he did not succeed he would try, try again."

L/Cpl Bancroft was killed during a gun battle which erupted while he was protecting a meeting between local elders and troops in southern Nad-e Ali.

Image copyright PA
Image caption L/Cpl Bancroft was due to marry his girlfriend after his tour of Afghanistan

The soldier went to Afghanistan in March as a Section Second-in-Command with 1 Platoon, Anzio Company - part of the battalion.

L/Cpl Bancroft joined the Army in September 2001 and served twice in Iraq before his posting to Afghanistan.

Giving the eulogy, his commanding officer Lt Col Andrew Kennedy said "he died doing what he did best".

"He was a Lance Corporal who could always be trusted, a man who would always deliver.

"He was one of life's leaders, a natural commander who gave confidence to those around him, and above all will be remembered for his zest for life.

"As we lay him to rest, the world is a little less complete. We have all lost a friend and England has lost one of our lions."

The regiment's flags have been flying at half mast in tribute to him.

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