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Home Canterbury News Article
The Queen is to visit Howe Barracks in Canterbury today for a final parade of the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders.
Her Majesty will witness the ceremony by the 5th Battalion the Royal regiment of Scotland (5 SCOTS) this morning.
Under Army cuts and restructuring, 5 SCOTS has been reduced to a single company and the battalion is leaving the city, which has been its home for the past 10 years.
It will conduct a final parade in front of the Queen, as Colonel-in-Chief, along with members of the wider Argyll/SCOTS family.
Civic guests, members of the regimental association and families of serving soldiers will also attend.
On Tuesday, crowds of supporters crammed Canterbury and applauded as 500 soldiers from 5 SCOTS paraded through the city for the last time.
They were exercising their right to parade having been granted the Freedom of the City of Canterbury in 2008.
Soldiers marched immaculately with bayonets drawn accompanied by the regimental mascot, Cruachan IV, a Shetland pony.
5 SCOTS is an air assault infantry battalion and has a distinguished history dating back to 1794.
The battalion’s forbears were dubbed the Thin Red Line at Balaklava during the Crimean War and won six Victoria Crosses in one day at Lucknow during the Indian Mutiny.
In the last decade, they have been deployed to Northern Ireland, Bosnia, Kosovo, Iraq and Afghanistan.
The battalion is to be reduced to a single Public Duties Incremental Company to be known as Balaklava Company - a nod to its Crimean War record.
The Queen visited Howe Barracks in 2004 to formally express her thanks to the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders for services abroad.
In her role as Colonel-in-Chief of the Argylls, the Queen awarded medals to 15 soldiers of the 1st Battalion and the Wilkinson Sword of Peace to the regiment.
The medals were for outstanding operational service in Iraq.
It came after 450 soldiers returned from there after a six-month tour of duty in July that year.
The sword of peace was for peacekeeping work in Belfast in 2002.
Her Majesty was last in Kent in November 2011 when she visited the Turner Contemporary in Margate.
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