Ceremonial burial for Staffordshire Regiment mascot

Watchman IV Watchman IV served as the Staffordshire Regiment mascot for 10 years

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A dog that was a mascot for the Staffordshire Regiment Association has received a ceremonial burial.

The black Staffordshire bull terrier, known as Watchman IV, retired in 2009.

The regiment said Watchman IV - also known as Stormer - had met the Queen twice and "brought joy to hundreds of people" at regimental occasions.

His coffin was carried through Burton in a procession attended by the mayor of East Staffordshire, and buried in gardens near the town hall.

'Never got growly'

Jim Massey, secretary of the Staffordshire Regimental Association, said: "Watchman was the fourth mascot we have had since World War Two.

"He was a particularly placid, well-behaved dog and a great regimental character, during the 10 years he spent with us.

"When we put his special coat on him, he knew he was going to get petted by hundreds of people but he never got growly with them."

Watchman IV, who was 15 when he died, lived with his handler Malcolm Bower and his wife. Mr Bower died in 2010.

The dog met the Queen in April 2006 at the 800th anniversary of Stafford borough and also at a remembrance service at Westminster Abbey.

Mr Massey said the dog had brought "instant recognition" to the regiment at such events.

"The mayor said a few words, we read a poem by his handler and we played the Last Post," said Mr Massey.

"We tried to do this in a dignified and appropriate way."

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