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Salute our Armed Forces this summer

Armed Forces Day 2016
27 January 2016
Local communities can show their support for Service personnel past and present this summer, with up to £10,000 available to help fund an Armed Forces Day celebration in their local area.

On Saturday 25 June this year, people across the nation will be joining local celebrations to say “Thank You” to members of the Armed Forces community - including current personnel, Reserves, veterans, cadets and families - for their contribution to the nation.

And to ensure that Armed Forces Day can be celebrated across the country this summer, funding is available to anyone who wants to host an event - from city-wide parades and local fetes, to smaller neighbourhood get-togethers.

Organisers can bid for up to £10,000 to help make their event, large or small, a success.  

In 2015, more than 170 Armed Forces Day celebrations were held across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, and over 120 were supported with funding from the Ministry of Defence (MOD). 

This year, the national event will be held in North East Lincolnshire, with the coastal town of Cleethorpes hosting a military parade, air displays, music, entertainment and family  activities that will make a great day out.

Six years on, my displays have gotten bigger and better, I’ve arranged an Armed Forces Day parade, and brought local cadets and veterans together for tea and cake!

Venetta Evans, from Dunbar

However, no event is too small – every year bids for a few hundred pounds are granted to assist smaller events, such as displays, school talks or family fun days for just a few hundred visitors.

Venetta Evans, 77, from Dunbar in Scotland has organised small Armed Forces Day celebrations in her town for six years, expanding with small amounts of Government funding each year. She started by creating just six Armed Forces Day-themed shop window displays in the year 2000. 

This year she is helping 28 shops in Dunbar to carry Armed Forces Day displays. She has also arranged parades, tea parties and other activities to help people in the local area honour local service personnel, past and present.

She said, “I’m very proud of my two grandchildren in the Armed Forces, and I wanted to help my neighbourhood learn more about the work they and their colleagues do. 

"Six years on, my displays have gotten bigger and better, I’ve arranged an Armed Forces Day parade, and brought local cadets and veterans together for tea and cake!

"The funding I receive from the Ministry of Defence has helped pay for a great many things, from expanding the photograph collection for our window displays to buying flags and providing high visibility jackets for parade stewards. 

"It’s helped Dunbar Armed Forces Day celebrations to grow and I’m already making big plans for the years to come”

To find out more about the application process and funding criteria, contact the Ministry of Defence Armed Forces Day team by email at [email protected] or by telephone on 020 7807 0970

The website, www.armedforcesday.org.uk, also contains a range of ideas to help you get the most out of your local event. 

Anyone interested in applying for funding should submit an application by 25 March 2016.

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