Getting ready to celebrate as Armed Forces Day nears
Armed Forces Day will finally be with us on Saturday 27 June 2015, giving everyone the chance to celebrate and thank our Armed Forces for their contribution to our country, both current service personnel and veterans.
This year, the Shropshire Armed Forces Community Covenant (AFCC), along with representatives of Forces based in the county, will be at the Shrewsbury Food Festival.
Not only is this a chance for everyone to improve their culinary skills and knowledge, it is also an opportunity to learn more about your local Forces and their roles within Shropshire communities.
Generous local businesses attending the festival will also be providing discounts for Forces personnel and veterans, as long as proof of service is given.
Shropshire’s AFCC will be joined by local Forces from Shrewsbury’s 202 (Midlands) Field Hospital unit which forms part of the Army Medical Services (AMS). To link in with the Food Festival spirit, 202 Field Hospital will be distributing ration packs to give people a taste of life in the Forces.
In preparation for Armed Forces Day, Shropshire Council officially raised the Armed Forces Day flag on Monday 22 June 2015 in a sign of their support.
In a testament to the contribution the Armed Forces can make to recruits and to the nations communities, Ian Somerville, local Shropshire resident and former Captain in the Royal Navy, said:
“When I joined the Royal Navy in 1961 it was described to me by an ‘old hand’ as ‘The Best Club in the World’. It was, and I am sure it still is; but it is so much more as well.
“It offers high quality training in the attributes and skills needed for a full career, many of which are also recognised by and transferable to civilian employment. It offers travel and excitement, challenge and camaraderie, and the certain knowledge of making a positive contribution to the security of the nation and to the well-being of its peoples. None of that has changed. I served for 35 years in a very worthwhile and enjoyable job helping to bring stability in an unstable world: a service that I am very proud to have given.”
Tim Barker, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member responsible for the Shropshire Armed Forces Community Covenant, said:
“Armed Forces Day is a great opportunity to celebrate and thank both current and veteran service men and women. As a veteran for the Army Reserves myself, I know what the Forces mean to me and their invaluable contribution to our communities.
“I’d encourage everyone to pay our Forces a visit at the Food Festival.”
Shropshire Council signed the Armed Forces Community Covenant in May, 2012, a voluntary statement of mutual support between the civilian and Armed Forces communities.
The aims of the Shropshire Covenant include:
• Encouraging activities which help integrate the Armed Forces community into Shropshire life
• Encouraging the Armed Forces community to help and support the wider Shropshire community, whether through participation in events and joint projects, or other forms of engagement.
For more information about the Armed Forces Community Covenant, please visit shropshire.gov.uk/SAFCC.