Northamptonshire soldier's Victoria Cross

A soldier from Northamptonshire who died as he protected the lives of his comrades in Afghanistan is to be awarded the Victoria Cross

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Tributes for soldier set to receive posthumous Victoria Cross

A Midlands MP and former army colonel has paid tribute to a soldier from Northamptonshire who is to receive the Victoria Cross for his "extraordinary courage" in Afghanistan.

Lance Corporal James Ashworth, 23, from Kettering, died last June while protecting his comrades during a battle with the Taliban. He served with the 1st Battalion Grenadier Guards.

Patrick Mercer, the Conservative MP for Newark in Nottinghamshire, said it was an extremely rare honour, with only 10 Victoria Cross' awarded since the Second World War.

"It's a sad thing but Victoria Crosses these days are largely posthumous," he said, "which gives you an idea of the intensity of fighting which actually leads to the award and a declaration like this."

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