COLOUR Sergeant Stephen Lightowler, a Silsden-based electrician, who has served with The Parachute Regiment for 34 years, has been given a special award by Her Majesty’s Lord-Lieutenant of West Yorkshire, Ed Anderson.

He has served in The Parachute Regiment for 34 years both as a regular soldier and as a reservist in Leeds-based 4PARA and has completed tours across the world including Northern Ireland, Belize and Kenya.

CSgt Lightowler said:“Being a reservist in The Parachute Regiment has enabled me to combine my military duties with running my own business. I get huge satisfaction training new recruits to meet the standards we need and I feel honoured that my contribution has been recognised with this award.”

Mr Anderson said:“Reservists combine civilian jobs with military careers and make a huge contribution to Britain’s Armed Forces. So it is a pleasure to honour CSgt Lightowler who has served his country both as a regular and reserve soldiers for 34 years. He has served in some of the most dangerous parts of the world and now inspires young soldiers to reach their potential.”