Hundreds at Armed Forces Day events

Hundreds of Shropshire war veterans visited RAF Cosford to celebrate the third annual Armed Forces Day which featured a flypast by the Battle of Britain Dakota.

RAF Museum Cosford marked Armed Forces day by inviting veterans from all three services to a reunion. At the tea dance are ex-Waaf Phyllis Borders, left, and ex-Wrac Maureen Lawley, both from Donnington.
RAF Museum Cosford marked Armed Forces day by inviting veterans from all three services to a reunion. At the tea dance are ex-Waaf Phyllis Borders, left, and ex-Wrac Maureen Lawley, both from Donnington.

Hundreds of Shropshire war veterans visited RAF Cosford to celebrate the third annual Armed Forces Day which featured a flypast by the Battle of Britain Dakota.

In scenes mirrored up and down the UK, former soldiers, sailors and air personnel came together for the reunion on Saturday which celebrated the commitment and sacrifice made by the British Armed Forces.

At Cosford, 300 veterans were given a tour of the airbase museum, a performance from the 451 Stourbridge Squadron Air Training Corps band, an afternoon tea dance with music from a local swing band, and a flypast from the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight Dakota.

Armed Forces Day at Wem Town Hall and Wem War Memorial with the raising of the armed forces flag and service of dedication. Seen is mayor Edward Towers at the war memorial.
Armed Forces Day at Wem Town Hall and Wem War Memorial with the raising of the armed forces flag and service of dedication. Seen is mayor Edward Towers at the war memorial.

Nina Mitchell, events organiser at the Cosford Museum, hailed the event a huge success and paid tribute to the service personnel who turned out to celebrate the day.

She said: “When Armed Forces Day began we only had 50 veterans attend, so having 300 this year demonstrates people are really getting behind the event. This is great news because our heroes deserve the recognition.”

In Scotland, about 100,000 people turned out in Edinburgh to watch 2,500 military personnel make their way down the Royal Mile from Edinburgh Castle’s Esplanade to Holyrood Park where the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall awaited them.

The prince stood on a podium and saluted every member of the Armed Forces to pass him. About 500 servicemen and women marched first, followed by 2,000 veterans and cadets.

Prince William and Kate continued in their new duties as Duke and Duchess of Cambridge by celebrating the day with soldiers, who had recently returned from fighting in Afghanistan, at Windsor Castle.

In a speech to the Irish Guards at the castle’s Victoria Barracks, Prince William said: “I can only imagine what the campaign medals you receive today must mean to you.”