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Last Updated: Monday, 10 March 2008, 15:01 GMT
Troops given freedom of borough
Soldiers parading in Ilkeston
The troops marched with bayonets fixed and their colours flying.
A special ceremony has been held for the Mercian regiment as they received the freedom of the borough of Erewash.

Thousands of people lined the streets of Ilkeston in Derbyshire to welcome the battalion, which lost nine men in recent operations in Afghanistan.

Councillor Chris Corbett, leader of Erewash Borough Council, said the regiment had strong links with the local community.

The soldiers marched up Bath Street before the ceremony at the town hall.

Colonel Simon Banton said: "It is a really great honour. The links between the borough of Erewash with the Sherwood Foresters and now the Mercian regiment go back hundreds of years, so it's great to be here.

"There's a huge number of guys from this local area in the battalion right now."

The troops marched with bayonets fixed and their colours flying.



VIDEO AND AUDIO NEWS
Mercian Regiment parade through Ilkeston



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