Wrexham soldier to fly the flag for forces day

Reporter:

Phil Robinson

A SOLDIER from Wrexham will have the honour of carrying the Union Flag banner in the National Armed Forces Day parade in Cardiff on Saturday.

WO2 Paul Jones, 36, was a pupil of Borras Park School and St David’s School, Rhosnesni, before joining the army at 16 as a Junior Leader.

He later joined his regiment, the 1st Queen's Dragoon Guards.

Paul has had a distinguished career, serving in Northern Ireland, Bosnia, Iraq and more recently Afghanistan.

He has also served as an instructor at Sandhurst, the army’s officer training college.

He is now the Regimental Quartermaster Sergeant of his regiment.

On Saturday he will proudly lead the parade, watched by thousands of people including the Prince of Wales the Duchess of Cornwall.

It has been a hectic few weeks for him as last Saturday he completed a gruelling 170km bike ride from Sennelarger in Germany to Nijmegen in Holland.

A number of soldiers from 1st Queen's Dragoon Guards are currently doing a 1,400-mile eight-day ride from Berlin to Cardiff in aid of the Army Benevolent Fund and Latch, the Children’s Cancer Fund.

Paul did one of the legs of the marathon pedal, which ends in Cardiff on Saturday.

He is no stranger to long stints in the saddle as he rode from John O'Groats to Land’s End last year for Help for Heroes.

Serving in the 1st Queen's Dragoon Guards – known as the Welsh Cavalry – is a family affair for the Jones's.

Paul’s older brother Rob, 39, is a sergeant in the same regiment, which he joined 13 years ago.

Their mum, Jill Jones, said: “We are very proud of Paul and Rob’s achievements.

“Unfortunately it is unlikely that we will make it to Cardiff to see Paul in the parade, but will be watching out for him on the television.”

TWO brothers who are both members of the Army Cadet Force had the honour of raising the Armed Forces Day flags outside the Guildhall in Wrexham on Monday morning.

Lance Corporal Shaun Bird, 14, and his 13-year-old brother, Cadet Mason Bird, were selected to jointly raise the flags on the balcony of the civic headquarters to mark the national day acknowledging the contribution made to the country by members of the armed forces.

Both boys are members of the Hightown cadet unit, Wrexham.

See full story in the Leader

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