The eight month tour of the 1st Battalion, The Yorkshire Regiment, of the British Army, which will serve alongside the Danish members of the NATO Battle Group in Estonia, began yesterday, Thursday at a ceremony held at Tapa City Hall.
The unit is to be based in Tapa, and replaces personnel of the 1st Battalion, Royal Welsh, which had been stationed in Estonia since the end of October last year, the head of the Estonian Defence Forces (EDF) announced.
1st Infantry Brigade Commander Colonel Veiko-Vello Palm of the EDF thanked the outgoing Regiment for their service at the ceremony, recognizing that the soldiers did a very good job, and that it was this precise, everyday close cooperation between the various members of the armed forces that serves to make NATO stronger and more coherent.
Nonetheless, Colonel Palm stressed the commitment that the incoming Yorkshire Regiment soldiers face.
“You have eight months ahead of you, during which time you must participate in our frustrations, and failing that, in protecting our country,” he said.
”I call on you to find the time for self-development, both as soldiers and as people,” he went on.
Thursday’s ceremony would have been tinged with a sense of loss, however, following the death of Private Reece Miller of the 1st Battalion, announced on Tuesday. Private Miller had died from non battle-related injuries and his body was repatriated to the UK yesterday, Thursday.
The Yorkshire Regiment was formed in 2006 as an amalgamation of three historic regiments, the 1st Battalions of each of the Prince of Wales’ Own, the Green Howards and the Duke of Wellington’s Regiment making up the first three Battalions of The Yorkshire Regiment, together with the short-lived East and West Riding Regiment, which made up the 4th Battalion. The 1st Battalion The Yorkshire Regiment is an armoured infantry regiment, and its Colonel-in-Chief is Prince Andrew, Duke of York.
The Regiment has participated in several foreign missions, including in Afghanistan, Iraq and Kosovo.