News story

Scots Guards mark return from Afghanistan with Glasgow parade

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

The 1st Battalion Scots Guards paraded in Glasgow on Saturday, 1 June, to celebrate their return from a tour of duty in Afghanistan.

People lined West George Street and George Square to watch the battalion take part in the homecoming parade following 6 months in Helmand province deployed to the Upper Gereshk Valley.

About 250 soldiers paraded through the city – the first time the battalion has done so since 1977.

The Commanding Officer, Lieutenant Colonel Rob Howieson, said:

It is a great honour to be marching through the streets of Glasgow today. The Guardsmen are very proud of their work and they are humbled to be able to parade in front of the people of Glasgow.

The battalion has had a challenging 6 months in Afghanistan and today’s parade recognises its achievements. It also gives friends and families the opportunity to celebrate their safe return and accomplishments of the last few months.

We are extremely grateful for the support we received from the local community all through the tour. Each week we would receive a helicopter-load of letters and parcels from well-wishers across Scotland.

We were sent everything from woolly hats to chocolate and board games. It was very touching that we were being thought about at a time we were so far from our homes.

Members of the 1st Battalion Scots Guards parading through Glasgow
Members of the 1st Battalion Scots Guards parading through Glasgow [Picture: Mark Owens, Crown copyright]

Glasgow’s Lord Provost, Sadie Docherty, said:

Glaswegians are extremely proud of their brave soldiers and today was no exception. Folk want our military to know that we are profoundly grateful for their bravery, loyalty and service.

As Lord-Lieutenant and Lord Provost it is always a privilege to meet military personnel and their families and I am thrilled to welcome 1st Battalion Scots Guards to our city today.

The soldiers of the 1st Battalion Scots Guards also paraded through the streets of Edinburgh on Friday, 31 May, where they were given the freedom of the city, and in Inverness on Thursday, 30 May, to mark their return from Afghanistan.