Germany

Commander Of British Forces Germany Hosts Final Reception In Bielefeld

The city has been a key centre for the British Army's senior headquarters since 1946, but troops will soon leave.

The last Commander of British Forces Germany has hosted his final official reception in Bielefeld.

The city has been a key centre for the British Army's senior headquarters since 1946.

Brigadier Richard Clements' guests at the private function included senior German officials.

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The event took place in Bielefeld, Germany.

The Band of the Prince of Wales' Division performed at Bielefeld's Sparrenburg Castle.

The performance is unlikely to be repeated, as British forces prepare to leave the city.

For more than 70 years, the British Army has had a presence in the city. In the past, five barracks were in Bielefeld.

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The Band of the Prince of Wales' Division performed at the event.

Headquarters British Forces Germany is the last of the key units based here.

By March all its personnel will have left.

However, speaking in German, the Commander of British Forces Germany told his audience it was not a goodbye.

It was "auf wiedersehen", or "until we meet again", for Brig Richard Clements. 

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By March, all Headquarters British Forces Germany personnel will have left.

Troops will continue to travel from Britain to train in nearby Sennelager.

The future British presence will include a Royal Engineer Squadron, which will be part of a joint German-British amphibious bridging unit.

At the event, the city's mayor Pit Clausen offered an impromptu and emotional 'thank you' to the British troops.