Former soldier Alasdair Ross is to take up a new role at the borough – as champion of services for troops and veterans from the armed services.

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Shadow defence secretary Jim Murphy is today urging all councils across the country to appoint someone to be a point of contact for veterans and their families.

Now Ipswich council’s Labour administration has asked Mr Ross to take on the role – he is one of the first in the country.

Mr Ross served in the army for many years before leaving for a new job in Civvy Street and being elected to the council.

However in 2009 he returned to the army for a six-month tour of duty with The Rifles as a specialist working on the front line in Afghanistan.

Mr Ross said: “There are specific issues that face armed services personnel moving back into civilian life.

“They often have been living in services accommodation, and need to find housing. There are issues with schools, social services – the aim is that there should be someone who can be a focus for their issues and can help them when needed.”

He expects to work with Rae Leighton who was appointed by Suffolk County Council to act as services liaison under the Military Covenant signed between all the local authorities in Suffolk and representatives of the armed services last year.

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