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Norfolk community finds a special way of honouring the memory of seven soldiers who died in Afghanistan

PUBLISHED: 09:59 13 March 2017

Sergeant Lee Paul Davidson. Picture: MoD Crown Copyright/PA Wire.

Sergeant Lee Paul Davidson. Picture: MoD Crown Copyright/PA Wire.

The sacrifices of seven Norfolk soldiers who died in Afghanistan will be remembered today when street signs named after them are installed.

Lance Corporal Richard James Brandon. Picture:  MoD Crown Copyright/PA Wire. Lance Corporal Richard James Brandon. Picture: MoD Crown Copyright/PA Wire.

The streets in Swanton Morley, near Dereham, are being named after L/Cpl Richard Brandon, L/Cpl David Dennis, Trooper Phillip Lawrence, Craftsman Anthony Lombardi, L/Cpl Nigel Moffett, Trooper Christopher Whiteside, who all died whilst on duty in Afghanistan in 2009, along with Sgt Lee Davidson, who died in Afghanistan in 2012.

They were all based in Swanton Morley with the Light Dragoons.

Today, members of The Light Dragoons and of The Corps of Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers will attend the final installation of street signs at the Hopkins Homes Meadow View development.

Having helped with the first round of installations, Sgt Bradley Rix of the Light Dragoons will again be joining the construction team when they dig in the permanent signs for Lombardi Mews, Brandon Close and Whiteside Mews.

Undated MoD handout photo of Trooper Phillip Lawrence. Picture: MoD Crown Copyright/PA Wire Undated MoD handout photo of Trooper Phillip Lawrence. Picture: MoD Crown Copyright/PA Wire

He will be joined by other members of The Light Dragoons and WO2 Stewart Blakey of the Corps of Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers, the Corps of Craftsman Anthony Lombardi and Lance Corporal Richard Brandon, who were with the Light Dragoons when they were killed in Afganistan.

A total of six streets and one open space within the development have been named after soldiers who were killed whilst on duty in Afghanistan.

Sgt Rix said: “I helped with the first round and we had a lot of the families and friends of the regiment turn up to support us.

“It will be good to know that all the signs are now installed and that the names of these soldiers who died serving their country will live on in the community as part of daily life.

Lance Corporal David Dennis. Picture: Ministry of Defence/PA Wire Lance Corporal David Dennis. Picture: Ministry of Defence/PA Wire

“I am proud to have served alongside these guys and have remained in contact with the families of those that I knew personally. I was particularly close to Sgt Lee Davidson, in whose memory I organise an annual football tournament in his home town of Doncaster.”

Swanton Morley has a long connection with the Light Dragoons, serving as their regimental home between 2000 and 2015.

More than 4,000 people lined the streets of Dereham to wish the regiment well on their final parade through the town before their relocation to Yorkshire in 2015.

Lee Barnard of Hopkins Homes said: “The residents of Swanton Morley are rightly proud of their connection to the Light Dragoons and the community has been extremely supportive of the development’s street names.

Trooper Christopher Whiteside. Picture: MoD Crown Copyright/PA Wire Trooper Christopher Whiteside. Picture: MoD Crown Copyright/PA Wire

“We are honoured to have Sgt Rix help us again today and hope that he, the regiment and the families of these soldiers will be able to watch the community develop around these streets.”

The full list of street names is:

• Brandon Close after Lance Corporal Richard Brandon

• Dennis Close after Lance Corporal David Dennis

Lance Corporal Nigel Moffett. Picture: Ministry of Defence/PA Wire Lance Corporal Nigel Moffett. Picture: Ministry of Defence/PA Wire

• Lawrence Way after Trooper Phillip Lawrence

• Lombardi Mews after Craftsman Anthony Lombardi

• Moffett Road after Lance Corporal Nigel Moffett

• Whiteside Mews after Trooper Christopher Whiteside

Craftsman Anthony Lombardi. Picture MoD/Crown Copyright/PA Wire Craftsman Anthony Lombardi. Picture MoD/Crown Copyright/PA Wire

All of whom died whilst on duty in Afghanistan in 2009.

• The open space will be known as Davidson Park after Sergeant Lee Davidson who died in Afghanistan in 2012.

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