Nottingham

Hundreds welcome Mercian Regiment soldiers in Derby

Mercian regiment march in Derby
Image caption The Mercian Regiment marched in Market Place in Derby

About 300 soldiers from the 2nd Battalion The Mercian Regiment have marched through Derby to mark their return from Afghanistan.

People lined the streets as the soldiers paraded from Back Sitwell Street to the Market Place.

Following the parade, a civic reception was held at the Assembly Rooms where six Derbyshire soldiers received campaign medals.

The soldiers were accompanied by ram L/Cpl Derby, the regiment's mascot.

Commanding officer Lt Col Colin Marks said: "Our soldiers have worked tirelessly through sweltering heat to set the highest standards in every respect.

"It is a great privilege to take part in this homecoming parade and I know that every one of us will be deeply grateful for the support... and at the same time intensely proud that we are finally home."

Image caption Mercians Capt Rupert Bowers and Pte Matthew Haseldin both died in Helmand province

Hundreds of people lined the streets in Nottingham to welcome the regiment on Monday.

The troops attended a service at St Mary's Church where two soldiers who were killed in action during the tour were remembered.

Capt Rupert Bowers, 24, from Rutland, died in a roadside bomb blast in March and Pte Matthew Haseldin, 21, from Settle, in North Yorkshire, died in an insurgent attack in November 2011.

The regiment was formed in 2007 when the Cheshire Regiment merged with the Staffordshire Regiment and the Worcestershire and Sherwood Foresters.

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