York sends Christmas wishes to troops in Afghanistan

A giant Christmas card carrying festive wishes for soldiers in Afghanistan will be available for people to sign at the Mansion House in York this week. The card, produced by the Lord Mayor and the civic party, offers the public the chance to show their support for local soldiers who are on duty in Afghanistan, and to wish them a Merry Christmas.

It will be available for people to sign on Wednesday, 28 November, from 1000hrs to 1200hrs in the Mansion House. It will also be available for signatures in the reception area of the Guildhall on Wednesday afternoon, Thursday afternoon, and on Friday, 30 November, from 0900hrs to 1700hrs.

The Lord Mayor of York, Councillor Keith Hyman, said: "I am glad that the residents of York have the chance to show their support and gratitude for the Armed Forces that are currently stationed in Afghanistan. York has been home to the Army since AD 71, when the first garrison was established in the city, so the city has always held a strong bond with the Army. The card will be sent to Afghanistan to the soldiers from 2 Signal Regiment based in York, and other local regiments. I am delighted we can help them celebrate Christmas."

The Officer Commanding 2nd Signal Regiment Rear Operations Group, Major Tony Barry, said: "We are all really proud of how soldiers are performing on Operation HERRICK in Afghanistan. This is a caring initiative by the City of York and its people, and it will boost morale for the soldiers during the festive season when they will be missing their families."

2nd Signal Regiment is deployed in Afghanistan as part of 4th Mechanized Brigade who took over control of Task Force Helmand in October. The signallers are providing secure communications, computers, video-conferencing and telephones to military units throughout Helmand province, as well as having a force protection role in the country's capital, Kabul.