Freedom of Entry to the City of Winchester City granted
At an Extraordinary meeting of the Council, Freedom of Entry to the City of Winchester was granted to the Defence School of Logistics and Administration based at Worth Down, Winchester.
The right of Freedom of Entry is an ancient privilege and allows the school to parade, by permission of the council, through the city to the beat of drums, with swords drawn, bayonets fixed and colours flying. It comes from a period in history when only trusted military units would be allowed to carry arms within city boundaries.
The Mayor of Winchester, Cllr Derek Green, said:
“The Freedom Honour is a rare gift. Historically, this right has been given to home or guest regiments with whom the host city feels safe and can rely on for protection. It signifies a special relationship between the civil and military authorities. Such a relationship exists with the Defence School of Logistics and Administration who help greatly to maintain our military links, and contribute to the local life and economy of our District.
“It is my great pleasure to welcome Group Captain Georgia Williams to her new role as Commandant of the Defence School of Logistics and Administration, and to present her with the Freedom Scroll, which formally signifies the granting of the Freedom of the City of Winchester to the Defence School of Logistics and Administration.”
Cllr Martin Tod, Leader of the Council who proposed the motion said:
“We have an unbreakable bond between our civil and military communities as we witnessed so strongly at the renewal of the armed forces covenant earlier this year.
“We in this city, have a tradition of honouring those links and we are proud of those historic connections to army and navy - and now for the first-time, also offering freedom to part of the RAF as well – it feels particularly fitting that we are offering freedom to one of the militaries essential training and education establishments.
“Both education and the military have been at the heart of our city and district since the time of King Alfred. It is a particular pleasure to offer the proposed freedom to an institution that strengthens both our military and educational reputation and heritage.
“Ultimately, this is about more than recognition of the closeness of our two organisations. It is about freedom and peace and the service and sacrifice that those trained by the defence school of logistics and administration help to guarantee, and the benefit that brings not only to us, but to our country as a whole.”