People turned out in the hundreds to support the women and men in the armed forces as Lowestoft celebrated its 12th annual Armed Forces Day. The crowds included veterans, serving troops and families of those who’ve are or have been a part of the armed forces. During the emotional day, the bravery of those who’ve served was honoured while those who’d died while fighting for their country were also thanked. Many people from all over Waveney came out to show their respect and there were many things lined up for the day including stands, displays and demonstrations which turned all of Lowestoft Royal Green.
Reverend Michael Asquith conducted a drumhead service on Saturday and there were many people present for the occasion and there was also a welcome speech from Major Philip Hope-Cobbold, the Deputy Lieutenant for Suffolk and also the guest of honour for that day.
There were prayers for those who’d served in the military and those currently serving and even those who’ll serve in the future. There was also a parade of standard bearers in which various organisations participated in as the City of Norwich Pipe Band and Lowestoft’s Salvation Army Band played the music. The Band of HM Royal Marines Collingwood performed in the morning and in the afternoon as various demonstrations, performances and displays also went on over the course of the day. There was a military vehicle display along with a special show from the Army bomb disposal unit 33 Engineer Regiment 821 Squadron.
Several organisations also put up stalls to create awareness for the work they were doing including the military charity for limbless veterans and the Royal British Legion and Blesma. Members of the public were also able to speak with local personnel who are currently serving in the forces as well as try out some of the equipment that is used by the Army. There was also a replica Spitfire on display.
Peter Aldous, the Waveney MP, commented that the event in Lowestoft was getting better every year and said that the Committee that had organised the activities of the day had done the town proud. He added that the large number of people who turned out showed that people had a lot of respect for the armed forces. The organising committee has already started to plan for the 2018 event and are looking for people interested in joining the committee.