AN OWLS-mad Sheffield soldier is helping to oversee the mammoth operation to supply thousands of British soldiers in Afghanistan, writes Richard Marsden.
Staff Sergeant Scott Kennedy, a former All Saints School pupil who grew up in Richmond, is among a small team in charge of the Group Supply Squadron at Camp Bastion, Helmand Province.
The squadron’s 200 soldiers organise the transport of everything from food to water and ammunition, spare uniforms and equipment.
Scott, of Supply Regiment Royal Logistics Corps, said: “We have aircraft arriving every day with items, which are then stored in six very large hangars and 10,500 shipping containers. At any one time, the value of the equipment in the stores can be as much as £144 million.”
The items are then sent to bases around Helmand, either by helicopter or huge mile-long convoys that make their way across the desert.
Getting the job right is essential, or the soldiers on the ground cannot do their jobs and lives could be at risk.
Scott said: “One of my tasks is to try to find solutions if problems happen, to ensure there is no interruption.”
Scott, whose mum Elizabeth still lives in Richmond, and who has a sister, Helen, in Handsworth, has served in Kosovo, the Falklands, Macedonia and twice in Iraq.
The 35-year-old is married to Ivy, has two sons aged nine and two, and has been in the Army for 17 years.
He was previously deployed in Afghanistan in 2001, based around Kabul.
“It was completely different then,” he said. “We were driving around in soft-top rather than heavily-armoured vehicles and wearing berets rather than helmets. But times change and it’s a privilege to be carrying out a vital role.”