Armed Forces Day

armed-forces-day

On 25th June 2011 the nation celebrated the third Armed Forces Day to give the general public an opportunity to show their support for the men and women who make up the Armed Forces community.

Although the National Event was held in Edinburgh, RAF Waddington personnel took to the High Street of Lincoln to raise public awareness of the contribution from Station personnel. As befits the multi-Service community at Waddington all 3 Services were represented from a multitude of sections across the Unit, all wearing their normal working dress. This relaxed dress was appreciated by all except the firemen who found their protective clothing rather warm in the seasonally hot weather. The mix of uniform was well received by the local community and helped provoke questions and conversation as well as highlighting the wide range of professions undertaken by station personnel.

The centrepiece, and only formal part of the day, was an address of gratitude to the Servicemen and women of RAF Waddington and their families from the civic community given by the Worshipful Mayor of Lincoln, Councillor Kathleen Brothwell. The address was replied to by the Acting Station Commander, Wing Commander Andy Pembleton, who also thanked the families for their support especially in the current climate of enduring operations in several areas of the world.

The parade was commanded very loudly and clearly by Flight Lieutenant Smye-Rumsby, who would have given the Station Warrant Officer a run for his money at barking orders across the parade square. Excellent musical accompaniment was provided by the RAF Waddington Volunteer Band and the military past and future were creditably represented by the standards of the local Veterans’ Associations and cadets accordingly.

The support to operations theme was reinforced by the presentation of operational medals to 6 servicemen by the Mayor and the local MP, Karl McCartney. This generated the greatest response from the large group of assembled well-wishers and characterised the feeling of goodwill from the people of Lincoln.

By Squadron Leader Martyn ‘Hedgie’ O’Brien

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