Armed Forces Weekend of Celebrations
This year’s Weymouth’s Armed Forces Day Celebrations will be held between Saturday 22nd and Monday 24th June. Once again, organisers Weymouth Town Council, are delighted to recognise the support of the MOD, with a £5k grant funding towards this year’s event. Organisers are also delighted to confirm a Spitfire flypast (subject to weather conditions) from the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight at 11am on Sunday 23rd June to coincide with the start of the service of remembrance.
The festivities will kick off on Saturday 22nd June from 10am, with an impressive Military Vehicle Convoy and display on Weymouth Pavilion Forecourt joining a variety of ex-service associations and charity stalls and display on Weymouth Seafront (Saturday and Sunday 10am–4pm). This will be followed by a ‘1940’s comes to Portland’ event from 1pm-4pm at Osprey Leisure Centre, Portland. Visitors will also be entertained by the singing group The Decadettes as they sing songs from the era.
Cllr Graham Winter, Weymouth Town Council Mayor, said: “Weymouth is very proud to have the veterans associations and community support to stage one of the country’s leading and most popular annual veteran’s events.”
“The Town Council and its residents embrace every aspect of the celebrations and looks forward to giving a warm and hospitable welcome to many thousands of veterans, armed forces personnel and their visiting family and friends from around Britain and overseas.”
One of the popular highlights of this year’s Armed Forces Day Celebrations will be a major military parade with almost 2,000 proud marching veterans, marching bands and over 80 historic military vehicles on Sunday morning on 23rd June. This will be preceded by a service at the British Cenotaph on Weymouth Seafront with particular focus on 75th Anniversary of D Day.
The Navy division will lead this year’s parade accompanied by the South Wales Police band; other bands featured in this year’s parade will be Wessex Military Band, Dolphin Marching Band and The Guards Division Corps of Drum Association.
Once the parade has passed, the Historic Military Vehicle Convoy will follow along the Seafront, presented by the Military Vehicle Trust, vehicles of all sizes and Nationalities including jeeps, tanks, AFV 432, half tracks, Leyland hippo, AEC Matador, GMC’S, staff and command cars, personnel carriers, motorcycles, push bikes etc. The Royal British Legion Riders Branch will be following the historic vehicles. The Riders Branch consist of members riding an assortment of new and old motorbikes who through their enthusiasm for motorcycling and willingness, raise funds to support the aims and chartable efforts of the Royal British Legion.
Veterans have made and continue to make a major contribution to our nation. The Weymouth and Portland Armed Forces Day Celebrations is an opportunity to recognise and celebrate the tireless work carried out by veterans and their associations.
There are plenty of additional events happening over the weekend including: