Ambulance technician attends royal birthday party for RAF

Ambulance technician attends royal birthday party for RAF

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An ambulance technician has rubbed shoulders with royalty at Buckingham Palace as part of the 100th birthday of the Royal Air Force.

Andy Bache-Smith, a technician based in Newark and a reservist for the RAF, played the cornet in a military band as part of the RAF 100th anniversary celebrations in London.

Andy, who was in the RAF for 10 years prior to joining EMAS, marched up and down The Mall with the band before enjoying a champagne reception in Buckingham Palace.

During the reception in the main gallery of the palace, Andy met and shook hands with Prince Charles, and saw Camilla, Prince Harry and Megan, and Prince William and Kate.

Andy, who has worked for EMAS for five years, said that the experience was surreal and he felt very privileged to be involved and be representing the RAF.

He said: “We were all blown away by the event, and the young airmen had faces like kids on Christmas morning which was lovely.

“Charles was very friendly and was asking us what we did in our day jobs. When I told him I work for the ambulance service he said ‘you all do such a good job and are very well thought of’.

“It was a long day but an amazing experience and it was an honour to be a part of it.”

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The military band performed for an hour outside the gates to Buckingham Palace, watched the Red Arrows flypast, and then they were invited through the gates into the courtyard and into the palace.

Andy explained that when the parade began, there were only a few thousand spectators, but by the end there were 120,000 people watching.

Andy added: “I have been in parades before but not on such a massive scale. It was a real once in a lifetime moment for me.”

The coverage was broadcast by BBC One and is still available online.