UK Armed Forces Day pays tribute to personnel past and present

·2 min read
<span>Photograph: Ian Forsyth/Getty Images</span>
Photograph: Ian Forsyth/Getty Images

The UK celebrated Armed Forces Day on Saturday, as public figures paid tribute to those currently serving, or who have served, in the military.

In a statement posted on Twitter, the Duchess of Cambridge paid tribute to “all the brave men and women” who “keep us safe”.

She wrote: “Today on #ArmedForcesDay, William and I would like to pay tribute to the brave men and women, past & present, serving in all of our armed forces, at sea, on land & in the air, here in the UK and around the world.

“Thank you for all you and your families sacrifice to keep us safe.”

Duchess of Cambridge in military gear in a tank
Duchess of Cambridge during her visit to Pirbright Training Academy in November
Photograph: Kensington Palace/PA

She also shared some photos from her visit to Pirbright Training Academy and Abingdon airfield in November last year.

“Last year, I was honoured to spend time with the British army to see how they train serving personnel and new recruits,” she said.

“It was wonderful to see first-hand the many important and varied roles the military play day in, day out to protect us all.”

More than 100,000 people were expected to attend an event in Scarborough, North Yorkshire, to watch military parades, air displays, naval beach landings and live music performances.

Prince Edward, the Duke of Kent, and defence secretary Ben Wallace were among those in attendance at the seaside resort, as well as some of the highest-ranking officers currently serving across the UK armed forces.

The Labour leader, Sir Keir Starmer, tweeted: “Britain’s armed forces are the best in the world – today, on #ArmedForcesDay, we thank both those serving and our veterans for their service.”

Despite being an official event, there is no public holiday to mark Armed Forces Day in Britain. It was renamed in 2009, having previously been known as Veterans’ Day from its inception three years earlier.

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