Regimental Association of the Prince of Wales's Leinster Regiment (Royal Canadians)

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Freedom of the City Award

The Leinster Regiment Association receives the highest award a community can bestow.

On the 12 October 2008, the Association was awarded the greatest honour that is possible to receive from a community. The Burgemeester and Council of the Town of Ledegem* in West Flanders awarded to the Regimental Association The Freedom of the City of Ledegem

The notification is reprinted in full below.

To the Secretary and Chairman of the Regimental Association of the Prince of Wales's Leinster Regiment (Royal Canadians)

As you know the village of Ledeghem* plans a remembrance weekend to celebrate the 90th anniversary of our liberation in "The Great War".
This occasion takes place in the weekend of the 11th and 12th October 2008.
With this commemoration we would like to honour those men who fought in the October -days of 1918 for a little piece of land in Flanders. A piece of land that was unknown to the Scots, Irish and British Troops. A small village called Ledeghem*.
After the liberation this history stayed hidden for many years.
The work of the historical Society in Liedengehem* did us think about this important moment in our history. When we discovered the big offers [sacrifices] that the allied forces had made for this liberation, the idea was growing to a memory-event.
We would like to thank and honour all those men who lost their young lives in Ledegem. We would also like to honour our own inhabitants and the Ledegem* soldiers who died.
The 2nd Leinsters were the first troops to get through Ledegem* in the early morning of the 14th October 1918. Two Victoria Crosses were won and the day after the liberation the Leinsters had to reform their troops from 4 to 3 battalion [companies] of losses.
This means that it was a heavy battle. It also means the beginning of the Battle of Kortrijk.
As [a] local government we would like to present "The Leinsters" [with] "The Freedom of the City". We want to give this award as a sign of deep respect and in gratitude to the courage and strong engagement of the Leinsters.
It would be an honour for us if you [the Association] would like to accept the invitation to march into our city "with drums beating, colours flying en [and] bayonets fixed" on Sunday the 12th October 2008.

B Dochy, De Burgemeester
G Demeyere, De Secretaris
Wally Corneillie, De Schepen [Elderman]
Marijke Devos-Joye, De Schepen [Elderman]
Geert Dessein, De Schepen [Elderman]
Bart Ryde, De Schepen [Elderman]

* The names Ledegem, Ledeghem, Liedengehem are all interchangeable. Liedengehem is the ancient name of the village. Ledeghem was the name in WW1 and Ledegem is the current name.

The President of the Association, The O'Morchoe, will reply formally to the letter reproduced above.

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