New commander for Colchester Garrison delighted to return home

Image of Lieutenant Colonel Ciaran Griffin OBE, Colchester Garrison Commander.

Image of Lieutenant Colonel Ciaran Griffin OBE, Colchester Garrison Commander. - Credit: Corporal Andy Reddy RLC

The new commander of Colchester Garrison – which includes Wattisham Flying Station and Rock Barracks, Woodbridge – has said he is delighted to be returning home.

Lieutenant Colonel Ciaran Griffin has lived in East Anglia for the last decade, but has always worked elsewhere or been on operations abroad – most recently in Afghanistan.

Lt Col Griffin said: “It’s a rare honour in Army life to be able to command a garrison in your home town.

“I am grateful to have this opportunity to contribute to life in Colchester and I shall do my utmost to support the town and its people.

“I have two priorities. One is to welcome new forces’ families to Essex and help them integrate into the local community.

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“The other is to ensure the people of Colchester enjoy the benefits of having the military in their midst. This relationship has prospered in recent years and I’m looking forward to promoting it further.”

The commander’s last job was a nine-month posting at the Afghan National Army Officers’ Academy near Kabul, nicknamed Sandhurst in the Sands, where he served as mentor to the Afghan Chief of Staff at the British-funded facility.

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He has also served in the Balkans, the Falklands and Northern Ireland and commanded his regiment, 1 Kings, in Iraq during the 2003 Gulf conflict. He was awarded the OBE for his leadership.

While in Basra Lt Col Griffin met his wife Sarah, then working as a newspaper foreign correspondent. The couple settled near Colchester and have two sons aged nine and five who go to school in Essex.

In his spare time Lt Col Griffin is a keen runner and is looking forward to taking part in several races in Colchester.

He added: “It’s my job to be the public face of the Army and to connect with the civilian community here in Colchester and across the county.

“Everyone on the garrison is grateful for the heartfelt support we receive from our local community and I will do all I can to ensure we continue to earn it.”

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