Civic welcome for our boys

Sergeant Gareth Thursby (left) and Private Thomas Wroe
Sergeant Gareth Thursby (left) and Private Thomas Wroe
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Calderdale is preparing to welcome home its heroes from a gruelling and bloody tour of Afghanistan.

The main group of soldiers with 3 Yorks are expected home late next month.

A civic reception in Halifax is being planned for Tuesday, December 4, for around 450 soldiers of The 3rd Battalion The Yorkshire Regiment (formerly Duke of Wellington’s).

Many have local family links as the battalion has its historic roots in Halifax.

They are currently rocked by the latest deaths to hit the battalion after two soldiers were shot dead by a rogue Afghan policeman.

Sergeant Gareth Thursby, 29, of Skipton, and Private Thomas Wroe, 18, of Holmfirth, were shot in Helmand province last Saturday.

Tributes have been widely paid to the two soldiers who are among several from the regiment to lose their lives during the six-month deployment.

Major Bob Heron, who commands the Halifax area headquarters for the Yorkshire Regiment, travelled to Brize Norton, Oxfordshire, yesterday for the repatriation of the soldiers.

“It’s another tragic event,” he said.

The public of Calderdale will get their chance to line the streets in tribute to the battalion and for the sacrifices made.

Soldiers will assemble at the Shay car park and march into the Piece Hall for noon when they will be welcomed by the Mayor of Calderdale Johh Hardy. They will then attend a home-coming service at Halifax Minster from 1.30 pm to 2.30 pm before marching back to the the Shay for a 3.15 pm reception hosted by Calderdale Council.