Reservists of the 206 (Ulster) Battery 105th Regiment Royal Artillery paraded through Coleraine town centre on Saturday to mark a very significant date. The event was held to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Freedom of the Borough. This was granted to the 206th (Coleraine) Air Defence Battery Royal Artillery (Volunteers) in 1992 by the former Coleraine Borough Council. T
he Freedom Parade, hosted by Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council, left from the Army Reserve Centre on Artillery Road, where a troop from the Regiment are based. Led by the Band of 2 Royal Irish Regiment, it was met at Coleraine Town Hall by elected members, and distinguished guests including members of the Royal Artillery Association and veterans.
This was followed by a Royal Salute in the Diamond. Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council’s Deputy Mayor, Councillor James McCorkell, who addressed the parade, said: “It was an honour to be a part of this commemoration, and I want to thank all of those who participated. It is important that we remember these significant anniversaries, and with a new Council in place, the event was an opportunity for us to forge new ties. Coleraine has close links with the reservists, and the Freedom Parade allowed us to reflect on their dedication and bravery.”
A spokesperson for the 206 (Ulster Battery) said: “It was with great pride that reservists exercised their Freedom of The Borough. 25 years ago, 206 (Ulster) Battery were known as 206th (Coleraine) Air Defence Battery Royal Artillery (Volunteers) and were equipped for Air Defence. Much has changed since then and it is now the only Unit in Northern Ireland armed with the L118 Light Gun, which it uses to fire Royal Salutes at Hillsborough Castle six times every year. One thing that remains constant is the close links and support that the Battery receive from the local community.” Members of the 105th regiment have been mobilised in support of the regular Army on a number of different operations, and have served in Iraq, Kenya, Canada, Kosovo and Bosnia.