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Richmond celebrates Armed Forces Day 2024
1 Jul 1 , 2024 Monday

Richmond celebrates Armed Forces Day 2024

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Over the course of the whole last weekend of June, military families and veterans were welcomed into Richmond to mark Armed Forces Day 2024.

As a national event organised as a way of showing the nation's gratitude to serving military personnel, Armed Forces Day was Richmond's first whole-town celebration of its kind - and thanks to organiser, David Routledge (himself an RAF veteran who now runs the busy Nutrition Hut cafe at Richmond Swimming Pool), it certainly did it in style!

With Richmond's nearby military connections and local regimental heritage at the heart of its community, local businesses and visitor attractions stood together to thank military families and veterans for their service by offering shop discounts and free entry to venues. The Green Howards Museum, Richmond Castle, and Richmondshire Museum all greeted UK Armed Forces personnel and their families to their visitor sites with free entry and events, and many local shops and cafes offered discounts.

On Sunday morning, the Friary Gardens became a Charity Village with stalls that included the Royal Air Force and Veterans Woodcraft. Just before 11am, a people's military parade, led by Newton Aycliffe Pipes and Drums, made its way along King Street to the gardens where Richmond's Mayor, Councillor Robert White gave a short speech. As a bugler sounded The Last Post, the symbolic raising and lowering of the flag was followed by a minute's silence before the Padre gave a short service of thanks.

The Station's exciting offer included The Armed Forces and Veterans Breakfast Clubs, live music from a vintage 1940s-style vocalist, Service Children’s Choir, RAF Leeming Military Wives Choir, and entry to any film (for service families) for just £4 per person. Visitors could also take a free steam traction engine ride around Station Yard or say hello to the visiting Stormtroopers, and learn about the local army history and The Station in wartime. There was also children's face painting, an appearance from a samba band in The Station's community garden, and special wartime themed beers and discounts at The Brewstation within The Station.

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