Today is the fifth annual Armed Forces Day and provides an opportunity to do two things. First, it raises public awareness of the contribution made to Britain by those who serve and have served in Her Majesty’s Armed Forces. Second, it gives the nation an opportunity to show support for the men and women who make up the Armed Forces community.
Mike Weatherley, the Conservative MP for Hove and Portslade, has praised the British Armed Forces for their heroic and courageous sacrifices.
“It is difficult to put into words just how grateful I am to all of our Armed Forces, who routinely put their lives at risk to ensure our continuing peace and freedom. I am sure I speak for all of the residents of Hove and Portslade when I say thank you for your amazing dedication. It is sometimes easy to forget, as we go about in our day-to-day lives, that the brave men and women of the Armed Forces are on watch, 24 hours a day, keeping us safe.”
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Conservative spokesperson on the Brighton & Hove Civil Military Partnership Board, Cllr. Ann Norman, has expressed her disappointment at the Green Administration’s lacklustre plans to celebrate Armed Forces Day in Brighton & Hove where Brighton’s efforts include information stalls at Jubilee Square during the morning and an exhibition about the Chattri Memorial at Brighton Town Hall.
By contrast, neighbours West Sussex took out a full page advertisement in the Argus to advertise their spectacular weekend of events at Steyne Gardens in Worthing, including military displays, military bands, marches and a flypast as well as an inspiring drumhead service.
Cllr. Norman said:
“I welcome the flying of the Armed Forces Day flag from King’s House as an important symbol of support but I really do feel that more could have been done to celebrate the day itself. The signing of the Armed Forces Community Covenant in Brighton & Hove was an important moment for the city and one of its aims is to forge closer links between the armed forces and local civilian communities. Armed Forces Day is the ideal time to be doing this and so I feel that this is a missed opportunity. With the centenary of the Great War rapidly approaching, I will be doing all I can, through the Partnership Board to ensure that the city sees some fitting commemorations next year for one of the most important moments in this country’s history.”