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Royal Marines march through Deal to mark launch of new heritage trail

By Eleanor Perkins

Two years of hard work and planning will culminate today with the launch of the Royal Marines Heritage Trails – Deal & Walmer.

Following initial support from all local councils and a number of community funds, a local heritage trail has been established to mark the close association of the Royal Marines in Deal and Walmer that has endured for more than 350 years.

The formal opening will be at Deal Castle at 3.30pm following a parade from the former South Barracks at 3pm.

The Commandant General Royal Marines, Major General Rob Magowan CBE (right) was the Royal Marines Heritage Trails first Patron and he has recently been succeeded by Major General Charles Stickland OBE (left) (1435786)
The Commandant General Royal Marines, Major General Rob Magowan CBE (right) was the Royal Marines Heritage Trails first Patron and he has recently been succeeded by Major General Charles Stickland OBE (left) (1435786)

Road closures will be enforced along part of Dover Road, The Strand, Victoria Road, Marine Road, Beach Street, King Street, High Street and St Goerge's Road from 2.50pm until 4.30pm.

The opening will be led by Commandant General Royal Marines, Major General Charles Stickland OBE who recently succeeded Major General Rob Magowan CBE - the Royal Marines Heritage Trails’ first patron.

John Meardon, chairman of the trustees, said: “We are extremely grateful for the incredible support of all our supporters and the local community.

“We are looking forward to the launch of the Royal Marines Heritage Trails – Deal and Walmer, as part of local commemorations for the centenary of the 1918 Zeebrugge Raid in which the Royal Marines played a substantial role.”

The event will start at 3pm with a parade, when the Band of Her Majesty’s Royal Marines Collingwood, accompanied by a Guard from 42 Commando RM will march from the Jubilee Gates of the former South Barracks via Dover Road along the Strand to Deal Castle.

They will be joined for the launch at 3.30pm on the area between Deal Castle and the seafront by representatives and standards from the SE Region Royal Marines Association, former WRNS and local Sea and Royal Marine Cadets.

The new trail will launch on Monday, April 23 (1435797)
The new trail will launch on Monday, April 23 (1435797)

The event will also be attended by The Lord Lieutenant of Kent, Lord De L’Isle who will take the salute and review the parade with the Commandant General, the Lord Warden of the Cinque Ports and the Mayor of Deal.

Royal Marines will then Exercise the Freedom of the Borough of Deal which was awarded to the Corps in 1945. This parade, starting at 4pm, will march along the seafront, past Deal Pier, turning left down King Street and via the High Street to Deal Town Hall where the day’s events will be brought to a close.

On Saturday, April 28, an event on Walmer Green will see the public walk, jog or run the new trail with guides available.

It will be a chance to follow the trail markers in place which indicate the various points of interest that the heritage trail highlights.

For more information visit royalmarinesheritagetrails.org

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