Parade route decision “slap in the face” for Grantham Army regiment

A parade of 150 soldiers from Grantham's 168 Pioneer Regiment RLC march through Grantham town centre last year.
A parade of 150 soldiers from Grantham's 168 Pioneer Regiment RLC march through Grantham town centre last year.
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A councillor has slammed the county council and police after they said an Army regiment which is to be disbanded could not hold the parade it wants through Grantham.

District Coun Mike Cook has criticised the county council because it says the route the 168 Pioneer Regiment wants to take on October 26 will cause too much disruption. But the Army says an alternative route offered by the council will cause it problems.

Coun Cook said: “Given all the support the Pioneer Regiment and the barracks have given Grantham over the years, this is a complete slap in the face for the people at the barracks. We gets lots of support from them and this is a decision taken by people who do not even live or work in Grantham.”

Following a service at St Wulfram’s Church, the regiment wants to parade down Brook Street before turning into Watergate and High Street. This will allow it to kit up and prepare for the march. But the county council has said it must parade down Swinegate and Vine Street before turning left into High Street, which the regiment says will make it diffuclt to march.

Mayor of Grantham Frank Turner said: “Their decision is absolutely abominable. It’s the thin end of the wedge. We cannot afford to let the regiment down. We have some top, top brass coming from the Army. We are only talking about 20 to 25 minutes through the town.”

The 168 Pioneer regiment, of the Royal Logistic Corps, is based at the Prince William of Gloucester Grantham. It recently returned from Cyprus and last year it paraded through Grantham after returning from Afghanistan.