First Norfolk soldiers from the Royal Anglian Regiment return home from Afghanistan

Major Matt Woodeson from Norwich is welcomed home by his children Isaac and Oscar.

Major Matt Woodeson from Norwich is welcomed home by his children Isaac and Oscar.


Norfolk soldiers serving with the 1st Battalion the Royal Anglian Regiment have returned home from Afghanistan.

Troops from A (Norfolk) Company arrived at their base at Picton Barracks in Wiltshire on Wednesday evening.

They were serving in Helmand province to push back Taliban fighters and help the Afghan army.

The Officer Commanding A Company, Major Matt Woodeson, who is from Norwich, said: “My company would go into the desert or reinforce one of the ground-holding companies to bolster troops, essentially to push back the insurgents away from where we were trying to transition.

“It could be four-hour operations or six to eight-hour operations predominantly partnered with the Afghan National Army.

“We are handing over to the next Brigade with many districts and precincts transitioned to Afghan control with the insurgents being put on a back foot.”

Families and friends gathered at the barracks to welcome the 113 soldiers back home.

Mr Woodeson’s wife Julia and his children Isaac and Oscar were there waiting to greet him.

He said: “It is really nice bringing the company together and bringing them home together.

“That is the high point of being a company commander - to march the blokes back from a tour and come home and see all our families and friends waiting for us.”

During their tour the Vikings have lost one man.

Corporal Alex Guy was killed when leading his section forward to help a group of Afghan soldiers who were pinned down in an insurgent ambush on June 15.

The Suffolk Company is due home on October 6 and the Essex Company on October 24.

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