BURNLEY soldiers are flying the flag for the claret and blue army out in the deserts of Afghanistan.
The King’s Royal Hussars men have been proudly been parading the iconic Clarets colours atop their Warthog armoured vehicle.
The boys from D Squadron, who are all from Burnley, posed with Burnley shirts, flags and Clarets mascot Bertie Bee in the 50 degree heat of Helmand Province.
But despite being thousands of miles from home, the six soldiers have been kept up-to-date on all the news from their hometown club with the help of the Burnley Express.
Copies of the newspaper have been sent out by friends and families which have been passed round the lads in Afghanistan.
Although unable to make any of the games at Turf Moor this season, the men have beem following the top quality Clarets coverage in the Express and are confident this season will be a good one for their club.
Sgt Maj. Joseph Clough said: “A read of the Burnley Express gives the lads a welcome break and it is good to keep informed of events back at home – although it’s weird reading it in 50 degree heat. You can take ‘the boy out of Burnley, but not Burnley out of the boy’.”
The men are serving out in Afghanistan with the King’s Royal Hussars on Operation Herrick 16. The regiment has strong recruiting ties with the North-West but D Squadron enjoys characteristics similar to that of the famous Pals Battalions of the First World War.
Many of the squadron come from Lancashire – however Sgt Maj. Joseph Clough, Sgt Lee Burnie, Cpl Ashley Williamson, L/Cpl Joss Bradbury, L/Cpl Elliott Pilling and Trooper James Kemp are from Burnley and, over the years serving together in the Army, they have formed a close bond.
Now serving together, their Burnley bond has helped them overcome many challenges together while supporting the transition of security in Helmand Province to Afghan Security Forces.