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The Regimental Association


The Mercian Regiment Association incorporates The 22nd (Cheshire) Regiment Association (CRA), The Worcestershire and Sherwood Foresters Regiment Association (WFRA), The Staffordshire Regiment Association (SRA) and The Mercian Volunteers Regiment Association (MVRA). For the time being, the antecedent Regimental Associations are continuing independently as before under their own names and management. The Mercian Regiment Association website is: http://www.army.mod.uk/mercian/association/index.htm.


The Cheshire Regiment Association (CRA) Birkenhead


by Graham Ball The branch received an invitation from Wirral Borough Council to take part in the Veterans’ Day event at Blackpool on 27 June. Together with members of various other Associations, we travelled by coach from Chetwynd TA Centre and started our day out with an excellent lunch at the Imperial Hotel. During the afternoon, everyone managed to view the many displays before the Veterans Parade stepped off at 1700hrs; it is hard to say how many took part but I believe that there were over a hundred standards and two bands on parade. It was a moving event, marred only by the weather. Following the parade, we returned to the Imperial Hotel for high tea, then coach back to Chetwynd. A big vote of thanks goes to Wirral Borough Council for their organisation on behalf of the Veterans. On Sunday 13 July, we paraded for the Commemoration Services at Ellesmere Port Boat Museum and Whitby Park organised by Ellesmere Port branch. It was good to see the level of support from other CRA branches, especially the turnout of eight Standards. After the Services, we went to Stanney Lane TA Centre where the Mayor and Mayoress of Ellesmere Port took a great interest and talked to many association members. We were proud to go to Chester the next weekend to welcome 1st Battalion The Mercian Regiment (Cheshire) home from their tour of duty in Iraq.


In early September, a mixed party from Birkenhead and Ellesmere Port Branches joined up for a week’s R & R in Jersey. Apart from the five hour delay at the airport


The Mercian Eagle


going out, it was a great time, spent in good company. We arrived home on Saturday 13 September, in good time to prepare for the Mons Reunion and Service the following day – once again this proved to be an excellent event. It was disappointing that the 1st Battalion march through Birkenhead on 28 September was cancelled at the last minute. However, Wirral Borough Council held a Veterans’ Day to celebrate Wirral’s Servicemen and women. A great day out included a veterans’ parade, military vehicles and recruiting displays. Veterans were also interviewed by local cadet units; these interviews were recorded to be given as an educational tool to local schools and libraries. At the end of October, we joined up with our friends from Ellesmere Port and travelled to Stockport for the East Cheshire Reunion. It proved to be an excellent evening with good food, company and entertainment from the Bollington Brass band leading up to a Grand Finale, the display by the 1st Bn Corps of Drums. This type of display is always popular with veterans and it is good news that the Drums are back on the scene again. We were very pleased on Remembrance Sunday to be on parade with a very well turned out detachment of Mercian Regiment Army Cadet Force members as well as our colleagues from the other Associations at Port Sunlight War Memorial. Following the Service and march past, we went with the ACF detachment to Port Sunlight Vision Museum, which is now the home of the 13th Battalion Silver Statuette, where a short Service was conducted by Maj W A Jones who outlined the history of the 13th Battalion and the support this Battalion had received from Lever Bros and the people of Port Sunlight during the 1914-1918 war. On


returning home to view the recording of the Cenotaph Parade in London, it was satisfying to see the coverage given to The 22nd (Cheshire) Regiment.


We rounded off a busy year joining with our friends from Ellesmere Port for their Christmas dinner - again a most enjoyable evening in good company and then, on Sunday 21 December, 40 members, wives and guests gathered for our branch Christmas


Brigadier Sharpe and CRA Chairman Peter Gresty


Mick Bird receives The Major General Peter Martin Award from Brigadier Andrew Sharpe OBE, President of the CRA


October 2009 139


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