THE Somerset County Gazette's Shoulder to Shoulder campaign in support of 40 Commando received Government backing yesterday.

Foreign Office Minister Alistair Burt - whose remit covers Afghanistan, where local Royal Marines have just completed a six-month tour of duty - was in the Taunton area.

He dropped by Norton Manor Camp, in Norton Fitzwarren, home to 40 Commando, where he toured the base and met Marines.

He congratulated them on their efforts in the dangerous area of Sangin, in Helmand Province, where 14 Marines died.

After touring the camp with Taunton Deane MP and fellow Foreign Office Minister Jeremy Browne, the two politicians visited the Royal British Legion in Taunton.

For more on this story, see next Thursday's Somerset County Gazette - and catch our preview on 40 Commando's welcoming home march through the town on Wednesday, November 17.