Military operations and the padre: reasons for being there

Rev Alan Steele MBE officiating at the D-Day services at Pegasus Bridge for this year's 70th anniversary

Rev Alan Steele MBE officiating at the D-Day services at Pegasus Bridge for this year’s 70th anniversary

The role of a padre serving with the Royal Army Chaplains’ Department (RAChD) is to minister to soldiers and their families, to give them pastoral, spiritual and moral support. The padres are commissioned as chaplains but wear officers’ rank, leaders but without command. They are sent wherever soldiers are sent, and are moved individually between units every two to three years.

Reverend Alan Steele MBE, senior padre of 16 Air Assault Brigade based in Colchester, has accompanied soldiers on two full operational tours to Afghanistan, as well as tours to Macedonia and Northern Ireland.

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Military operations through the eyes of the padre: ‘sent wherever soldiers are sent’

Rev Alan Steele out on the ground

Rev Alan Steele out on the ground

The role of a padre serving with the Royal Army Chaplains’ Department (RAChD) is to minister to soldiers and their families, to give them pastoral, spiritual and moral support. The padres are commissioned as chaplains but wear officers’ rank, leaders but without command. They are sent wherever soldiers are sent, and are moved individually between units every two to three years.

The Reverend Alan Steele MBE is in his early fifties and is the senior padre of 16 Air Assault Brigade based in Colchester. The interview is in his book-lined Army quarter where his two teenage children serve us tea and ginger biscuits.

Steele had his first tour of duty to Afghanistan with the 2nd Battalion, Parachute Regiment (2 Para) in 2001/2002.
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Interview with Lance Ramsay, General Manager of the Bakerloo Line: “Nothing comes first time. It doesn’t come easy.”

The final piece from the feature on the Underground published by the online magazine, The New Londoners, in June 2014

The final piece from the feature on the Underground published by the online magazine, The New Londoners, in June 2014

The Tube – always extraordinary

These facts link with the earlier article: "London and the life beneath its feet". Part of the feature on The Underground published by the online magazine 'The New Londoners' in June 2014

These facts link with the earlier article: “London and the life beneath its feet”.
Both were part of the feature on the Underground published by the online magazine ‘The New Londoners’ in June 2014