Her Majesty The Queen led the tributes for Armed Forces Day on Saturday 27th June as the nation celebrated the annual event in different ways due to the Coronavirus pandemic. Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, also paid tribute to veterans and serving military personnel while there was a Red Arrows flypast in Scarborough to mark the occasion.
The Queen released a message across The Royal Family social media accounts which said, “The Duke of Edinburgh and I join many around the United Kingdom in celebrating Armed Forces Day, and the efforts of our military both at home and overseas. Today provides and opportunity for thanks, and a recognition of the dedication and risks faced by those serving our nation. We also have cause to thank veterans, who continue to contribute to our way of life, long after they leave the Armed Forces.”
In normal circumstances, Armed Forces Day is the culmination of a week-long event held across the country however as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic and UK lockdown, celebrations have had to be scaled back. The Armed Forces have been involved heavily in the UK’s response to the pandemic including repatriating UK citizens from abroad, distributing PPE to the NHS and even helping to construct the NHS Nightingale field hospitals across the nation.
Boris Johnson also marked the occasion with a video message saying, “Whether you’re a regular, a reservist, a civilian contractor, a veteran, or the family and friends who support our military in so many ways, we as a nation salute you. We know that – day and night, at home and abroad, at sea, on land, in the air and even in space and online – our fantastic Armed Forces are there for us.”
Labour leader, Sir Keir Starmer, also shared his thanks to Armed Forces personnel “for the role they play both at home and abroad.”
To mark the occasion, the Red Arrows took to the skies above North Yorkshire where they flew over the Army’s Catterick Garrison and RAF Leeming leaving behind their famous plume of red, white and blue.
The Ministry of Defence have already announced that Armed Forces Day 2021 will take place in Scarborough with Steve Siddons, leader of Scarborough Borough Council, saying, “What we’re looking forward to now is next year. It’s going to be an even bigger and better event.”
Armed Forces Day 2021 will take place on Saturday 26th June.
Photo Credit: Wikimedia