TROOPS from Sunderland’s adopted regiment have paid a special visit to the city.
Members of the 4th Regiment Royal Artillery met civic dignitaries at a party at the Winter Gardens, ahead of their up-coming tour-of-duty in Afghanistan.
The regiment, which is also known as the North East Gunners, was granted the Freedom of Sunderland in the early 1970s.
More than two-thirds of its recruits are from the region.
Captain Emma Wardall said: “As the North East Gunners, we have strong links to the city of Sunderland and hold this annual cocktail party as a way of thanking the city for their continued support. This year it is particularly important as we are due to deploy to Afghanistan on the upcoming tour.
“The Mayor and Mayoress of Sunderland attended, along with other Sunderland dignitaries.”
In 2010, crowds lined the streets of the Sunderland to welcome home soldiers from Afghanistan.
They said they were overwhelmed with the reception they had received from the city.