July 11, 2017
An ancient ceremony that grants a trusted military force the right to enter a town was re-enacted in Kingaroy on Saturday with much pomp and circumstance.
The trusted troops were from the Defence Force School Of Signals Electronic Warfare Wing, which trains at the Borneo Barracks at Cabarlah.
Accompanied by an Australian Army Band from Brisbane, the signallers marched up Youngman Street and Haly Street until they were brought to a halt by Acting Senior Sergeant Scott Prendergast, who was representing Kingaroy Police.
The police officer challenged the marchers who replied quite truthfully they had been granted the Freedom of Entry to Kingaroy.
(A motion to this effect was passed by the South Burnett Regional Council in February.)
This right entitled the signallers to enter Kingaroy on all ceremonial occasions “with swords drawn, drums beating, flags flying and bands playing …”
Acting Senior Sergeant Scott Prendergast acknowledged that Council had granted them the right, and let the marchers past.
The parade then turned into Glendon Street where the troops assembled in front of the official guests for the formal part of the ceremony.
The Defence Force School Of Signals Electronic Warfare Wing (formerly known as the Joint Telecommunications School) was formed in 1986.
It trains personnel from the three Defence arms and an average of 350 students graduate every year.
The school is no stranger to the South Burnett.
On November 11, 1993, it was the first training unit to be granted Freedom of Entry to Nanango Shire, and since then members have taken part in many local ceremonies.
They have now added Kingaroy to their home territory …