Bridport is the only southern town to host Rifles Freedom March in 2014

FREEDOM OF BRIDPORT: The Rifles are coming

FREEDOM OF BRIDPORT: The Rifles are coming

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UP to 100 soldiers could go on parade when Bridport hosts the Freedom March by the Rifles.

Bridport is the only town in the south the Rifles will march in this year.

The military parade on Sunday, June 22, will begin at 11am from West Street coach park.

It will be welcomed by the mayor in front of the town hall.

The parade, which will mean a road closure, will go to East Street and turn by Barrack Street and the salute will be taken at the town hall on the way back.

The soldiers will then be joined by civic guests and local groups as is done on the Remembrance Day parade. The contingent will then march to St Mary’s for the midday church service. After the service will be the Sounding of the Retreat outside the town hall. There will then be receptions at the town hall and Bridport Arts Centre. The town council has allocated £1,500 for its events budget. The Rifles have agreed to pay 50 per cent of the overall costs.

The regiment was honoured with the freedom of Bridport in 2011 but operational commitments in Afghanistan meant members couldn’t attend the ceremony themselves.

Crowds were packed six deep in places as mayor Geoff Ackerman handed over a scroll to Brigadier Richard Toomey, the deputy colonel commandant of The Rifles.

Former Rifleman Coun Geoffrey Ackerman said it had been a pleasure and honour to give the regiment the freedom on the town on behalf of the people of Bridport.

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