LOCAL people are being urged to line the streets of Chorley town centre early on Saturday 6 June to watch soldiers from the 3 Medical Regiment march in honour of being awarded the Freedom of the Borough.
Chorley Council will bestow the honour on 3 Medical Regiment in recognition of the Regiment’s close association with Chorley and the service its officers and soldiers have given to the borough.
The day will begin with a special council meeting, followed by a service at St Laurence’s Church. The full Regiment will then form up on St Thomas’s Square at 11am where the Mayor of Chorley, Councillor Marion Lowe, will present a Freedom Scroll to them around 11.15am.
The Regiment will then march from St Thomas’s Square, along St Thomas’s Road into Market Street before turning left into Chapel Street, left along New Market Street, left at the mini-roundabout and up High Street, right onto Market Street, past the Town Hall into Back Mount before dispersing.
People are welcome to gather around St Thomas’s Square to watch the presentation of the Freedom Scroll and line the route of the parade to watch the soldiers march pass led by the Royal Engineers Band and ceremonial police forces.
The Deputy Leader of Chorley Council, Councillor Peter Wilson, said: “The Freedom of the Borough was last given in 2007 to honour those local men and women who serve in 64 Squadron based at the Barracks in Chorley. However, as our local squadron now serves within another Regiment, it is only right that we recognise that Regiment in the same way.
“We realise this is the same day as the Chorley Carnival, however, the march will take place before the carnival parade. When we discussed these arrangements with the carnival committee a few months ago, we all felt that both parades would make a great spectacle in the town centre on Saturday 6 June and everyone should be given the opportunity to enjoy both.
“We are very proud of our close ties with the Armed Forces. Indeed we have already pledged our support for them with the signing of a community covenant which is a public undertaking that both the civilian and Armed Forces communities will work together to help and support each other.
“It is a great sight to see the soldiers marching through town and I would urge people to come and share this rare occasion with us and line the streets to watch 3 Medical Regiment and listen to the Royal Engineers Band.”
The Officer Commanding of 64 Medical Squadron the local Squadron here in Chorley, Major Angie Warner who has been the Regimental Planning Officer for the event, said on behalf of the Commanding Officer, Lieutenant Colonel Adrian Meredith: “It is a tremendous honour for the Regiment and in particular 64 Medical Squadron to receive the Freedom of the Borough. The officers and soldiers are looking forward to the event immensely and recognise the importance of receiving the Freedom Scroll. The Regiment will continue to make the Chorley community proud and will continue in earnest to work alongside the civil communities.”
This is only the fourth time Chorley Council has granted the Freedom of the Borough.
Anyone who is travelling in and around Chorley on Saturday 6 June is being advised that there will be some road closures in place for the Freedom of the Borough march; however, the majority of these will be quickly lifted once the soldiers have passed.
The only Freedom of the Borough road closures that will remain for the majority of the day will be Mealhouse Lane and Farrington Street including Farrington Street car park.
Motorists are also advised to check the route of the carnival parade in advance on their website www.chorleycarnival.org