Colne trooper meets Prince Philip

A SOLDIER from Foulridge has had the honour of meeting the Duke of Edinburgh as part of an upcoming tour to Afghanistan.

Trooper Ross Clegg (18) was one of only eight people chosen to be part of the Guard of Honour in welcoming Prince Philip to the Queen’s Royal Hussars in Germany.

Tpr Clegg, a former Primet High School pupil, was dressed in full ceremonial attire to greet Prince Philip who was visiting the Regiment as their Colonel-in-Chief to discuss their deployment to Afghanistan in October.

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And Tpr Clegg said his parents Martin and Lynn and brother Lance Corporal Daniel Clegg (20) who serves with the Royal Military Police in Cyprus were delighted to learn of his role after only being with the Army for a short time.

“I was asked if I would like to be part of the Guard of Honour for the Duke of Edinburgh’s arrival, and was quite surprised as I had only been part of QRH for six and a half weeks. I was very happy to be asked and when my parents found out they were very proud of me.”

During the visit, Prince Philip inspected military equipment and spoke to soldiers before meeting with soldiers’ families and presenting medals to members of the Regiment.

Tpr Clegg spoke of his experience on meeting the Royal: “I was slightly nervous beforehand but once it all started I just settled down and the nerves went away. It was a great honour and will always be something that I will be able to look back on with a great deal of pride.”

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Lt Colonel Ian Mortimer, Commanding Officer of the Queens Royal Hussars, said: “His visit is a great morale booster for us all, as we look forward to a demanding six months in Helmand. I hope that we will be able to tempt him to come and present Campaign medals on our return.”

Tpr Clegg is now preparing to join his regiment in Afghanistan in October in a light infantry role for his first operational tour.

He added: “It really boosts morale among everyone having our Colonel in Chief here. He is a very important person and it is great that he is interested in what we are doing and how we are preparing for our deployment to Afghanistan.

“I am slightly nervous about going to Afghanistan, I think everyone is, but I am really looking forward to putting all my training into practice and getting the life experience that a tour there will provide.”