Donation will come in sandy for the TA

Warrant Officer (Class 2) Phil Knowles shows Willie Docherty how the mine detecting equipment works.
Warrant Officer (Class 2) Phil Knowles shows Willie Docherty how the mine detecting equipment works.

MOTHERWELL company Morrison Scotland has made an unusual donation to the town’s Territorial Army battalion.

The Range Road firm, which carries out repairs and maintenance of social housing, has gifted the 6 Scots division 10 tonnes of sand to help with training.

The TA asked North Lanarkshire Council for help after Colour Sergeant John McKinney and Warrant Officer (Class 2) Phil Knowles came up with the idea of creating a minesweeping area behind the Muir Street facility.

The council passed the request on to Morrison who were happy to help out.

Captain Andy Blair said: “This was a brilliant idea by John and Phil and we were delighted when Morrison were able to make it happen.

“Initially we asked for five tonnes of sand which we thought would be enough, but when it turned out it wasn’t they were happy to provide us with more.

“The biggest danger to our soldiers being deployed in Afghanistan is concealed explosives so it is great we now have a facility where our lads can practice detecting them.

“We have a number of 6 Scots being deployed within the 1 Scots Battalion of the British Army in the autumn and they will now be trained in mine detection to the same standards as the regular soldiers prior to departure.”

Morrison managing director Willie Docherty added: “It was certainly a very unusual request, but I’m delighted we were able to come up with a solution.

“I have seen first hand the effects of landmines so anything we can do to help in training the soldiers to detect them is something we are happy to do.”