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Deputy Prime Minister invites members of the armed forces to attend Paralympics closing ceremony

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Nick Clegg: "We owe our armed forces a debt of gratitude for their magnificent security work for the London 2012 Games".

Members of the Army, Royal Air Force and Royal Navy who helped with security during London 2012 have been invited to attend the closing ceremony of the Paralympic Games by Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg.

The ten armed forces personnel will also be guests at an official reception, hosted by the Deputy Prime Minister, which will take place ahead of the closing ceremony on Sunday. They were all nominated in recognition for their exceptional working on security for the Olympics and Paralympics.

Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg said:

We owe our armed forces a debt of gratitude for their magnificent security work for the London 2012 Games, particularly the quick response to provide extra personnel at short notice.

From handling search dogs to providing bomb disposal expertise, guarding the gates and extraordinary feats of transport and logistics, they have covered themselves in glory.

If the previous ceremonies have been anything to by, Sunday should be a spectacular they’ll remember for many years to come.

The members of the armed forces who will attend include:


  • Corporal Anna-Marie Ingram, 25, of the Royal Army Veterinary Corps. Based in Rutland, she has taken on extra work by acting as the second in command for a unit of 17 Military working dog handlers, as well as handling her own dog, Holly. Her unit has been supporting the Metropolitan Police Service in securing Olympic and Paralympic sites, using their dogs to search for ammunition and explosives.
  • Lance Corporal Simon Wilkinson, 23, of the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers. Usually based at Ipswich, he has helped secure the main accommodation site for military personnel supporting security at the Games venues, conducting mobile patrols and gate guard duties to prevent unauthorised personnel from accessing the site. His professional and mature approach to dealing with visitors, both wanted and unwanted, has drawn particular praise from his commanders.
  • Warrant Officer Nigel Scobie, 46, of the Royal Signals. A reservist from London, he helped set up the IT network centre for military personnel in the run-up to the Games, before taking on responsibility for 300 personnel providing logistic support to military personnel supporting the Games.
  • Major Michael Willis, 33, of the Yorkshire Regiment. Based at HQ London District, as the Lead Olympics planner over the past year within the Joint Military Command (London), he had a key role in developing the security plans for London venues, and particularly in managing the sudden increase in the number of military personnel deployed a fortnight before the Olympics.
  • Warrant Officer Scott Hamilton, 34, of the 2nd Battalion the Parachute Regiment. Usually based at Colchester, he has been a group leader for venue security personnel in one sector of the Olympic Park, and has performed outstandingly in forming personnel from all three services into an effective team.

Royal Air Force

  • Senior Aircraft Woman Amanda Hussey, 20, based at RAF Brize Norton in Oxfordshire. Working in Feltham, she has been administering the initial reception and orientation of over 10,000 military personnel coming to London to support venue security.
  • Warrant Officer William Dixon, 47, based at RAF Wittering in Cambridgeshire. Planned and then delivered, with his team, the catering support for 3,500 military personnel housed at Hainault.

Royal Navy

  • Able Seaman Matthew McEwan, 28, of the Southern Diving Unit 2, based at Portsmouth. A clearance diver who secured sites by conducting underwater searches at venues, and played a key part in using lessons from pre-Olympic exercises to improve the delivery of security during the Games themselves.
  • Leading Seaman Darren Lacy, 42, of the Southern Diving Unit 2, based at Portsmouth. Has been a key part of liaison between his unit, LOCOG and the Police in conducting joint planning and exercises to integrate military bomb disposal expertise into security plans.

The Closing Ceremony celebrates the achievements of athletes at the London 2012 Paralympic Games and marks the handover from London to Rio de Janeiro for the 2016 Paralympic Games. It features the extinguishing of the Paralympic Flame, signalling the end of the Games.