More than 2,000 people visited Hemel Hempstead's Gadebridge Park for our Armed Forces Day celebration on Saturday (1 July 2017), organised with support from the Ministry of Defence.
Armed Forces Day is an annual campaign that gives people the opportunity to show their support for the men and women of the Armed Forces past and present, including currently serving troops, service families, reservists, veterans and cadets.
The event was opened by the Mayor of Dacorum, Cllr David Collins and there were fairground rides, stalls and activities in the park, along with fire safety demonstrations from the Fire and Rescue service, live music and dancing. Radio Dacorum also broadcasted throughout the day.
The Royal Signals Motorcycle Display Team, The White Helmets, were the star attraction, performing one of their final ever shows.
Mike Penning MP presented awards to local primary school children who entered our poetry competition. One of the poetry competition judges, RAF Halton's Wing Commander Jason Chalk, said: "Really well done to all the poets who entered. As a serving member of the Armed Forces I was both moved and struck by the insight of many of the entries – it really meant a lot."
Cllr Neil Harden, Portfolio Holder for Residents and Corporate Services, said, "So much hard work and planning has gone into providing a fantastic day of celebrations. With so many attractions taking place throughout the day there really was something for everyone.
"Our Armed Forces Day celebration was a great way to bring people together to recognise the contribution of those who have fought to protect our country and those still serving."
Similar events have been taking place across the UK, enabling people to come out and show their support, giving a much-valued morale boost for Armed Forces personnel and their families. This year's national event took place in Liverpool.