OFFICIAL TIES: Australian Army soldier Signaller Nathaniel Whittaker from 145th Signals Squadron, which is part of 17th Combat Signal Regiment, provides communication support.
OFFICIAL TIES: Australian Army soldier Signaller Nathaniel Whittaker from 145th Signals Squadron, which is part of 17th Combat Signal Regiment, provides communication support. CPL Nunu Campos

What is Freedom of Entry and why are armed troops in town?

BACK in the days of ancient Rome the boundary of a city was sacred.

Armies and their generals were forbidden from entry to the city, except for victory celebrations and even then soldiers had to dress in civilian clothes.

Equally, all weapons save for those carried by guards were forbidden.

This tradition carried on through the Middle Ages and these rules helped protect the civilian populace from violence, theft and extortion at the hands of armed soldiers.

These rules even applied to the personal soldier of the regional king and visiting soldiers would have to camp outside a city, even during winter months.

During the Middle Ages a city would, over time, form a close bond with a nearby lord, who commanded a force of personal soldiers and giving them Freedom of Entry was one way to formalise this bond.

These days the freedom of the city is an entirely ceremonial honour, usually bestowed upon a unit with historic ties to the area, as a token of appreciation for their long and dedicated service.

On Saturday Kingaroy will give the Freedom of Entry to the Defence Force School of Signals Electronic Warfare Wing from Cabarlah.

Kingaroy and the Electronic Warfare Wing will form an official relationship that will see members of both parties support each other in years to come.

The relationship could see their personnel officiate services on Anzac and Remembrance Days while students from scout and cadet units may visit and train with the wing.

South Burnett

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