'Most Tasked Battalion' In Army Receives Service Medals From Prince Andrew

Personnel from 2 SCOTS deployed to South Sudan, Cyprus and Iraq during 2018.

Members of 2nd Battalion, The Royal Regiment of Scotland (2 SCOTS) have been presented with operational medals by His Royal Highness Prince Andrew.

Personnel from 2 SCOTS, the Royal Highland Fusiliers, deployed to South Sudan, Cyprus and Iraq during 2018 - the latter where they trained local forces in how to combat militants as part of Operation Shader.

After being piped onto the parade ground at the Battalion's Barracks in Penicuik, the Duke of York, the battalion’s Colonel, handed out medals to the soldiers.

"The nature of your duties and your work mean that you have to be capable of doing so many different things," Prince Andrew told those gathered on the parade ground.

"For this particular battalion, I know that you are probably the most tasked battalion in the Army.

"You have been deployed and kept operational for a great length of time."

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Reflecting on the ceremony to Forces News, Lieutenant Colonel Campbell Close, Commanding Officer of 2 SCOTS, said: "It’s a huge honour for us to have our royal Colonel come up and visit us in our barracks and to present Op Shader medals to the soldiers to recognise the efforts they’ve put in over the last six months to a year.

“But also to speak to our families and thank them for the support that they give us when we’re deployed overseas."

One soldier whose family came to see the presentation of his medal was Lance Corporal Adam Williams: “It was very good having the support of my family coming,” he said.

"Around about nine people came to see me receive my first medal. Parading with everybody you were on tour with is always a good feeling."

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Prince Andrew salutes the soldiers of 2 Scots.

It was also a very special day for a member of the French Army who became one of the first French soldiers to be presented with an operational medal from the British Army since the Second World War, having served with 2 SCOTS in Iraq.

Captain Cyril said the medal showed the British and French armies were capable of working together. 

"I’m very honoured to be this guy today," he told Forces News.

This year, some of 2 SCOTS will be deployed overseas on exercise to Oman and others are due to join their comrades in Balaclava Company in Kuwait.

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Captain Cyril of the 27e bataillon de chasseurs alpins receives his medal from Prince Andrew.