SIXTY years after he joined the army, Glasgow soldier and former SAS trooper Peter McAleese is bidding a farewell to arms.

The 77-year-old is putting his entire archive, which documents his explosive career, up for auction this week.

Peter has served with Britain’s Parachute Regiment, Rhodesia’s SAS and the South African Defence Force.

He has battled drug barons in Columbia, trained bodyguards in Moscow and taken on security work in Algeria and Iraq.

He was even part of a special taskforce set up in an attempt to assassinate drug lord Pablo Escobar.

Peter’s personal collection goes under the hammer at Richard Winterton Auctioneers’ Fine Arts and Specialist Sale at The Lichfield Auction Centre in Staffordshire, on March 24.

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At the helm is his three-bar General Service Medal named to Trooper SAS as part of a unique group of nine medals.

The collection, which also includes his berets, dog tags and even a handmade ceramic plaque painted by staff in Algeria as a tribute during his stint organising security, is estimated to fetch up to £22,000.

The divorced dad-of-three has decided to part with the items after downsizing to a flat in his adopted home of Birmingham, where he once ran The Gunmakers Arms pub.

“I’m just an ordinary person, who happened to find himself doing extraordinary things. I mean that from the bottom of my heart,” Peter says.

“I’ve had a great life. I’m extremely happy at the moment and I have a marvellous relationship with my family.

“I enjoyed the Army – the Army was good to me. It just came to an end.”

He adds: “I was a professional soldier and like a guy who is a brickie, for example, you go where the work is.

“I’ve ended up with quite a lot of personal militaria relating to my career and there was just too much stuff – it was just gathering dust.”

Peter has detailed his extensive experiences in several books, including No Mean Soldier.

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He enlisted in the Parachute Regiment in Aberdeen aged 17 and went on to complete the legendary selection course to become a member of the 22 Regiment SAS.

He was one of the first SAS troopers to complete HALO parachute training with the US Green Berets and to free-fall parachute into a ‘hot zone’ .

He served in Borneo with the SAS, fighting in gruesome jungle warfare, before leaving the British Army in 1969.

Peter’s new career as a professional soldier took him to the Angolan Civil War, where he fought on behalf of the National Liberation front of Angola, and to Rhodesia where he joined the SAS as a non-commissioned officer. He also worked in Russia and Iraq.

By the mid-80s, McAleese had set up home in Pretoria where he worked with a military police private contractor.

He was severely injured in a parachute display jump before returning to the UK, where he worked for government forces in the Columbian drug wars, including involvement in a covert operation to locate drugs baron Escobar.

Nick Thompson, medals specialist at Richard Winterton Auctioneers, said: “In the world of collecting military medals, those to the British Special Forces hold a particular place in people’s hearts.

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“They are the classic British troops dropped behind enemy lines and working undercover, no different to the modern SAS.”

He adds: “The beauty of this group is that McAleese has published books highlighting his military career.

“Because of the secretive nature in which the SAS is run – for all the right reasons – it’s sometimes very hard for the collector to find out the story behind the medals but not in this case. “

He adds: “It’s all there in the books. This group represents a unique insight to the tough world of a professional soldier.”