Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 16°C

min temp: 11°C

ESTD 1874 Search

RAF Honington: Hundreds of soldiers dispatched to fight Berkshire floods

17:37 11 February 2014

Members of II Squadron Royal Air Force Regiment from RAF Honington on their homecoming parade from Afghanistan

Members of II Squadron Royal Air Force Regiment from RAF Honington on their homecoming parade from Afghanistan

West Suffolk soldiers have been deployed to fight the severe flooding affecting hundreds of homes in the Thames Valley.

shares

A total of 233 soldiers from RAF Honington made the trip to Berkshire yesterday as part of a joint effort to address the floods that have plunged towns and villages near Windsor underwater.

Squadron leader Paula Willmot MBE said the troops would begin work straight away and were likely to start by getting sandbags to affected areas and generally trying to lend a hand wherever possible.

She added: “Everybody is keen to help. We’ve been on standby - on point, as we call it - and we’re keen to get on our way and to be seen doing something.”

Sqdn Ldr Wilmott also said more troops from the base could be sent to the area over the coming days should the orders come from above.

The soldiers will be based in Windsor as a joint military and Environment Agency operation targets those areas worst affected, such as Staines, Datchet and Wraysbury.

More than 1,650 military men and women across the south are on high alert and ready to be dispatched to Berkshire as rising levels on the River Thames continues to cause chaos.

Former Thurston Community College student Andrew Marriott now lives in Datchet and has been helping vulnerable neighbours flood-proof their homes and move furniture out of harm’s way.

The 24-year-old’s home had escaped flooding when he spoke to this newspaper last night, but water levels were continuing to rise and he said he was by no means out of the woods.

He added: “Some of it does need to be seen to be believed. You don’t really realise how much is effected until it happens - everything grinds to a halt.

“Datchet is a lot like a small Suffolk village - small community, everybody knows everybody - and people are having to band together. The community spirit is amazing and everyone is doing the best they can.”

shares

2 comments

  • Funny how the government's leaping into action now the Tory heartlands of the Thames Valley are getting flooded.

    Report this comment

    beerlover

    Tuesday, February 11, 2014

  • They are not soldiers....they are airmen (and women)....bit of a clue....Squadron Leader...since when has that been an army rank?

    Report this comment

    Occold335

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

Doeke Dobma of Clinks Care Farm, Toft Monks, Beccles.

An East Anglian care farmer has invited a group of refugees based around Ipswich to pay a visit next week and pick produce grown on his land.

The new building for Thomas Gainsborough School in Great Cornard. Headteacher, Wayne Lloyd is pictured.

Students beginning the new school year in west Suffolk next Monday will return to a brand new multi-million pound state-of-the-art building.

Spooky costumes on the beach at Felixstowe to launch the Halloween walk for EACH

A charity walk will light up Felixstowe’s promenade with its Halloween theme when it takes place next month.

Design illustration for the restored station house and canopy at Wickham Market

A £25,000 funding boost to restore an historic station in Campsea Ashe was presented to the group behind the plans on Tuesday.

The Mason family, Gillian, Luke (centre) and Neil at the Sibton White Horse which they run and has been named Suffolk Pub of the Year for Dining 2016 for the second year.

A rural country inn is celebrating this week after being crowned Suffolk Dining Pub of the Year for the second year running.

Fire crews were called to Fraser House in Museum Street, Ipswich after a suspected gas leak was reported

A road in Ipswich has been reopened after a suspected gas leak forced the evacuation of a three storey building this morning.

The police scene after a man was shot in the stomach at Forum Court, Bury St Edmunds

A man has appeared in court in connection with the shooting of a man in Bury St Edmunds last month.

Durrants Rock n Roll auction

Inflatables and stage props go under the hammer in Rock n Roll auction

Charlie Frost

“If everyone had a dad like him I don’t think there would be half so many problems in the world.”

Janine Edgar with son Jonty

A mum from Hadleigh is backing a Cancer Research UK campaign asking more people to remember the charity in their wills.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages