CLITHEROE town centre will be awash with red, white and blue on March 10th, when the Duke of Lancaster’s Regiment is awarded the Freedom of Ribble Valley.
Shops and businesses will mark the historic occasion by decking the town centre streets with bunting and Union Jacks. They also aim to raise hundreds of pounds for the charity, Afghan Heroes, by selling wristbands in their shops.
The event will be marked by the signing of an illuminated scroll by civic dignitaries in the Ribble Valley Civic Suite, after which the scroll will be presented to Brigadier Mike Griffiths CBE by Ribble Valley Mayor Lois Rimmer in Market Place, Clitheroe, following a parade through the town centre by 130 soldiers from the Duke of Lancaster’s Regiment and Band of the King’s Division.
The soldiers will tuck into Liberation Ale, courtesy of brewer Daniel Thwaites, as well as a special sausage, the Duke of Lancaster’s, devised by Cowman’s Famous Sausage Shop of Clitheroe, at a reception afterwards.
Ian Lloyd, president of the Clitheroe and District Chamber of Trade and Commerce, said: “Our members will be pulling out the stops to ensure the town centre looks resplendent for this historic occasion.
“We are pleased to play our part in ensuring the Duke of Lancaster’s Regiment enjoys a warm welcome to our wonderful borough.”
Ribble Valley Mayor Lois Rimmer said: “This kind of initiative is what makes Ribble Valley such a special place and we are delighted that Clitheroe shops and businesses are helping us honour the servicemen and women who have served and continue to serve our country.”
l Soldiers from the 1st Battalion, Duke of Lancaster’s Regiment, will march from the bottom of Moor Lane to Market Place at 10-45 a.m. on Thursday, March 10th, where they will be presented with the Freedom of the Borough scroll by Ribble Valley Mayor Lois Rimmer, who will then invite onlookers to give the soldiers three cheers, before they parade out of town.
Lancashire Constabulary is asking shopkeepers and members of the public to watch out for unattended bags or packages, or any suspicious activity, on the day of the parade. Anyone who sees anything suspicious is asked to inform a police officer or steward immediately.