THE ARMY logistics expert brought in by Prime Minster Boris Johnson to help speed up the coronavirus vaccine roll-out has strong family ties to Cardigan.

Brigadier Phil Prosser, commander of the 101 Logistic Brigade – also known as the Iron Division – spoke alongside Prime Minister Boris Johnson at a press conference on Thursday evening, where he outlined the army's involvement in delivering millions of doses of the vaccine in the coming weeks.

The brigadier’s family has strong ties to Cardigan, with dad Gwyndaf, a former police officer, and mum Eira, a former civil servant, both from the town before moving to Llanelli.

“We are extremely proud of the role he is playing,” said Gwyndaf.

“He has served all over the world, including Afghanistan, Bosnia and Iraq and it is great to see him now taking on this role at home.

“He was heavily involved in the early stages of the pandemic last year, helping distribute PPE equipment to the NHS. He was awarded the CBE in the New Year Honours List for his role in that operation.”

Formerly in the Corps of Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers, Brigadier Prosser studied at Welbeck College, Sandhurst and Cranfield University in Bedfordshire, before doing a Masters with the Open University.

His wife Shani is from Fishguard and they have a daughter. He also has a brother Gareth.

Brigadier Prosser is under no illusions about the size of the task ahead.

"We aim to deliver the vaccine as soon after it is supplied as possible, not leaving vast quantities in the warehouse - it needs to be in arms not on shelves," said Brigadier Prosser.

He added that the operation would be "unparalleled in its scale and complexity. It is the equivalent of setting up a major supermarket chain in less than a month.

“My team and I are honoured to be able to serve our communities and protect our nation at home.”

PM Johnson said "hundreds of thousands" of jabs would be offered each day by 15 January, adding the army would be "working hand in glove with the NHS and local councils to set up our vaccine network" to deliver the vital jabs throughout the UK.