Essex: Former Grenadier Guard from Woolwich Barracks speaks of anger over street killing

Ben Parker, former Grenadier Guard from Essex

Ben Parker, former Grenadier Guard from Essex - Credit: Contributed

A former soldier, who twice served on the frontline in Afghanistan, believes it was only a matter of time before our troops were targeted on home ground.

Ben Parker, 26, who was a Guardsman with the Grenadier Guards, said: “After recent events in Woolwich I am appalled and angry that this has happened.

“However I am not surprised with our forces being increasingly reduced and funding cut, but with our commitments to overseas duties remaining the same, it was only a matter of time before troops were targeted on home soil.”

Mr Parker grew up in Essex and spent two years based between Wellington Barracks and Woolwich Barracks during his time with the Guards.

He continued: “With the main military effort abroad, the UK’s doors are increasingly open, appearing soft to outside countries and cultures.

“On Wednesday we were caught napping. Unlike in the Second World War when we had a ‘Home Guard’ to work alongside the authorities while our boys were in Europe, at present unless absolutely needed, the armed forces have no immediate involvement in home and community security other than through advisors. And this leaves soldiers and military bases vulnerable to attacks.

“Our boys go above and beyond abroad, but from my own experience once home and the hype is over, they eventually get forgotten until something like this happens which is wrong.”

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