Capital honours service personnel with Armed Forces Day parade

Six Year old Luca Gordon from Edinburgh with ex-service personnel from Legion Scotland after they marched down the Royal Mile during the ninth annual Armed Forces Day. Picture: PA
Six Year old Luca Gordon from Edinburgh with ex-service personnel from Legion Scotland after they marched down the Royal Mile during the ninth annual Armed Forces Day. Picture: PA
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EDINBURGH has paid tribute to servicemen and women at events held to commemorate Armed Forces Day.

Parades were held in the capital and Aberdeen to mark the day, with these included in the 300 events taking place across the globe.

Ex-service personnel from Legion Scotland march down the Royal Mile Picture: Andrew Milligan/PA

Ex-service personnel from Legion Scotland march down the Royal Mile Picture: Andrew Milligan/PA

The Scottish Government’s veterans minister Keith Brown, who served in the Falklands conflict, said those who had served in the Armed Forces were a “significant asset” to the country.

He said ministers were “working hard” to help veterans on issues such as healthcare, housing and education.

Mr Brown, who attended the celebrations in Scotland’s capital, said: “Armed Forces Day is a chance for communities across Scotland to say thank you to our service personnel, veterans and their families for their service, commitment and courage.

“Veterans and their families are a significant asset to businesses and the recently set-up Strategic Group will focus efforts on boosting their career opportunities once they leave the Armed Forces.

“I am pleased that this group, chaired by Mark Bibbey of Poppyscotland, is getting to grips with this agenda and look forward to seeing it drive forward action in coming months.

“The Scottish Government wants to do all we can to support the Armed Forces community and, along with local authorities, we are working hard to help on healthcare, housing, education and other issues.”

Serving members of the forces and veterans marched to Edinburgh City Chambers on the Royal Mile, where earlier this week the Armed Forces Day flag was raised.

Lord Provost Frank Ross said: “This city has a long and proud tradition of supporting the Armed Forces and our veterans. Holding a day in their honour provides us with an opportunity to do all we can to thank them for all they do to keep us safe.

“This week’s flag-raising and the weekend events demonstrate Edinburgh’s support of serving troops and their families, our veterans and cadets. A special private reception for our veterans will be held in the City Chambers as the city’s thank you.”

Meanwhile in Aberdeen, Vice Lord-Lieutenant Andrew Lawtie took the salute as the parade passed the city’s Town House, where he was joined by Lt Col Phil Fox, commanding officer of the Aberdeen Universities Officers Training Corps (AUOTC), Lieutenant Malcolm Garrington of the Royal Navy and Squadron Leader Paul Whitford, who was representing the Royal Air Force.

The Vice Lord-Lieutenant said: “Aberdeen always embraces this opportunity to say thank you to personnel for their service to the country by turning out in large numbers to watch the parade.

“It’s heart-warming to see spectators young and old pay tribute to the British Armed Forces community for their hard work, dedication and efforts to keep us safe in the UK and across the globe.

“The pipe bands, marching personnel and military vehicles fill the length of Union Street, creating quite a moving spectacle.”

Prime Minister Theresa May and Defence Secretary Michael Fallon both marked the day by taking part in the celebrations in Liverpool.