Wales

Royal Welsh soldiers in Ludlow for 325th anniversary

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Media captionSoldiers will march into the town on Saturday to receive the honour

Soldiers from 1st Battalion The Royal Welsh have been granted the freedom of a Shropshire town to mark a historic anniversary.

Ludlow Town Council's gesture commemorates the 325th anniversary of the raising of the Royal Welch Fusiliers (RWF) at Ludlow Castle.

Soldiers marched into the town on Saturday to receive the honour.

They last marched through Ludlow in 1997 at a homecoming parade after service in Bosnia-Herzegovina.

The Royal Welsh was formed in 2006 when the RWF amalgamated with the Royal Regiment of Wales, becoming the 1st Battalion and 2nd Battalion The Royal Welsh respectively.

In April, they combined to form the 1st Battalion under the Army 2020 shake-up of the armed forces.

Image copyright BBC news grab
Image copyright BBC news grab
Image copyright BBC news grab
Image copyright BBC news grab

The history of the RWF goes back to 1689 when Henry, 4th Lord Herbert of Chirbury, formed regiments of infantry.

Ludlow mayor Jim Smithers said: "As well as being the 325th anniversary of the raising of the Royal Welch, 2014 is the 100th anniversary of the start of the Great War.

"So this is the perfect time to commemorate the gratitude of the people of Ludlow to the soldiers past and present who have served this country, not least the Royal Welsh Regiment and its predecessors."

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