Day to pay respect to forces

The Mayor of Lancaster, coun Sheila Denwood, was guest of honour at Armed Forces Day in Market Square on Saturday, where she drew the winning tickets for the prize drawin aid of BLESMA (British Limbless Ex Service Men's Association) and Help For Heroes. Pictured with the mayor are Captain JB Lean O.B.E RN Ret, Brian Jefferson M.B.E tresurer of the Lancaster Military Heritage Group, members of Lancaster ACF cadets, Lancashire Army cadets, and Lancaster Royal Grammar School CCF.
The Mayor of Lancaster, coun Sheila Denwood, was guest of honour at Armed Forces Day in Market Square on Saturday, where she drew the winning tickets for the prize drawin aid of BLESMA (British Limbless Ex Service Men's Association) and Help For Heroes. Pictured with the mayor are Captain JB Lean O.B.E RN Ret, Brian Jefferson M.B.E tresurer of the Lancaster Military Heritage Group, members of Lancaster ACF cadets, Lancashire Army cadets, and Lancaster Royal Grammar School CCF.

It’s nearly time for us to mark Armed Forces Day (Saturday, June 28). This is an opportunity for the civilian and military communities to come together and ensure that the contribution of veterans and their families is never forgotten.

I served in the Armed Forces in Iraq, Northern Ireland and the Falklands. As a former soldier and Lancashire County Council’s Armed Forces and Veterans Champion, I am acutely aware of the sacrifices made by veterans and their families in the service of our nation.

Through acts of remembrance, we take time to recognise those who gave what Abraham Lincoln described as “their last full measure of devotion” for their comrades and their country.

This year’s Armed Forces Day coincides with the centenary of the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand – the catalyst for the outbreak of World War One.

I hope that as a community and a county we can come together for a period of reflection as we commemorate the events that saw the lamps go out all over Europe, and for all conflicts since then.

I would encourage people in Lancashire to attend local events and show their support for our armed forces, veterans and their families.

Across Lancashire, various events will be happening to mark Armed Forces Day. You can find out more details about local events near you by visiting www.LancashireWW1.org.uk.

Darren Clifford

Lancashire County Council’s Armed Forces and Veterans Champion.