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NEW YEAR MESSAGE FROM THE COLONEL OF THE REGIMENT
IP: 5.81.151.40


RHQ/FUSILIERS/1363 1st January 2021
NEW YEAR MESSAGE FROM THE COLONEL OF THE REGIMENT
Fellow Fusiliers,
I write this on a cold, damp New Year’s Day evening, whilst reflecting on the uniquely challenging year that we and our friends and families have endured.
I think it really struck me just how unusual this year has been when the CO of the First Battalion explained to me in October, having just returned from Estonia, that it was the first time that anyone could remember where those deploying (as the pandemic struck) were more worried about the safety and well-being of those left behind, than the other way around.  
And I recognise that the impacts of the pandemic have been felt beyond the potentially lethal virus itself. As a wider Fusilier family, we have endured the challenges of cancelled leave, short notice taskings, employment and wage insecurity (within family and friendship groups), home schooling, postponed healthcare and loneliness; and I am sure there are others. The resilience, grit, loyalty and selfless commitment that you have all shown is in the true spirit of St George; I applaud you and your families and want to say a huge thank you.
I do believe that there are many reasons to remain optimistic that 2021 will be much better. Of course, new treatments and vaccines will help combat COVID-19. As the days lengthen, the vaccine rolls out and normality slowly returns, I think the mood of the nation, and our Fusilier family within it, will lift.
And this year we will take our traditionally strong sense of Fusilier family (OAFAAF) and make it even stronger, to build an even more dynamic, happier and more self-aware Fusilier family, from cadet to veteran.  Alongside the Fusilier Association, we are working to develop the Fusilier ‘network’ to ensure that we better look out for each other and capture those that may need support. And we should look to foster the strong sense of community that the pandemic has given rise to. I would ask that we all redouble our efforts to look out for those in need of a little help. If you think someone needs it, get in touch. If we don’t know, we can’t help.  We may not have the answer, but we will almost certainly know who does.
So, as 2021 begins, keep safe, keep smiling and keep moving forward. Look out for each other and remember, OAFAAF.
Brigadier J Swift OBE
Colonel of the Regiment
RHQ FUSILIERS, HM Tower of London | London | EC3N 4AB | Mil: 94631 6906 | Civ:
0203 166 6906 | asstregtsec@thefusiliers.org
Our Hackle – the badge of History and Heroes

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