KL.FM Off-Air by Ross Birkenshaw, June 7, 2016

RAF Marham Freedom Parade on the Tuesday Market Place King's Lynn.
RAF Marham Station Commander Group Captain Rich Davies ADC MA RAF, with Borough Mayor Councillor David Whitby ANL-160206-135205009

RAF Marham Freedom Parade on the Tuesday Market Place King's Lynn. RAF Marham Station Commander Group Captain Rich Davies ADC MA RAF, with Borough Mayor Councillor David Whitby ANL-160206-135205009

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In my job, I consider myself very lucky and fortunate.

As a journalist you get to see, do and experience things that many other simply won’t get the opportunity to do. This can be from the day-to-day things like interviewing amazing and fascinating people to going on-air to broadcast some breaking news. However, the events of the past few days has made me think back to a couple of experiences that will stay with me forever.

Last week the Borough of King’s Lynn and West Norfolk had the great honour of allowing personnel from the Royal Air Force at Marham to exercise their right to march through the town after being awarded the Freedom of the Borough. For anyone who braved the wind and rain on the Tuesday Market Place witnessed an awesome sight of our armed forces in full military regalia.

A few years ago, whilst working for another radio station, I was given the amazing chance to spend some time with the British Army on a training exercise. For 7 days I was encamped with the Second Battalion of the Prince of Wales Royal Regiment (2PWRR) at the army’s training base in mid-west Canada, Camp Wainwright. It was fascinating and amazing to see first hand just what is involved in keeping a battalion of soldiers going. One thing that stands out is the sheer amount of work and logistical planning goes into providing 3 meals a day to the troops out in the field. The saying goes “an army marches on its stomach” and how very true that is.

Several months after this, I was then invited to assist with some training with the Royal Navy, where I was on-board the aircraft carrier HMS Illustrious, cruising around the cold north Atlantic for about a week and a half. My experiences with both sections of the armed forces only underlined my genuine admiration for all of the men and women who dedicate their lives to protecting us, either at home or abroad. In sometimes, very challenging situations they remain professional, committed and loyal at all times.