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You are here: Home Page > Council and Democracy > Council News > Archived News > February 2014 > Freedom of the Borough Parade

Freedom of the Borough Parade

On Saturday 1st March Bedford Borough is proud to host the 201 (Herts and Beds Yeomanry) Parachute Battery Royal Artillery (Volunteers) Disbandment Parade through Bedford Town Centre. This will be their final Freedom of the Borough Parade before they disband after 220 years of service.

 

The Parade will form up at Bedford Park in preparation for march off around lunchtime.  It will then head down De Parys Avenue onto the High Street and on to The Embankment. They will be joined with music from The Band of the Parachute Regiment.

 

Mayor of Bedford Borough, Dave Hodgson, commented: “Bedford is extremely proud to host the 201 (Herts and Beds Yeomanry) Parachute Battery Royal Artillery Volunteers final Freedom of the Borough Parade. I hope people turn out to show them their support and give them a good send-off as they march through the town.”

 

The Commanding Officer of 100 Regiment RA, Lieutenant Colonel Mike Bishop, said: “The Army Reserve needed to be shaped to meet future challenges. Our soldiers realise that and I know will serve their future units with the same commitment they have given to 201 (Hertfordshire and Bedfordshire Yeomanry) Parachute Battery Royal Artillery. A commitment that has made me proud to be their Commanding Officer.”

 

He continued: “The parade will provide an opportunity for Regiment’s members past and present to reflect on their part within the Battery’s 200-year history. Whilst this parade marks the end of an era it is also a time to celebrate the history and service of the Regiment.”

 

The Hertfordshire & Bedfordshire Yeomanry was formed in May 1961 but their origins date back over 200 years.  Both the Herts and Beds Yeomanry were initially a Cavalry Brigade but were converted to Artillery in 1920.  Both counties were represented in the British Expeditionary Force and fought both in France and the Far East. 

 

Throughout the various changes in formation, their mission has been to train and provide individual reinforcements for service with the Regular Army.  The Battery will enter Suspended Animation on 31 March 2014 – the conclusion of 220 years of service.

 

It is expected that the stretch of the Embankment between the High Street and Newnham Road will be closed to traffic during the full duration of the Parade.

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