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Flying high as borough marks Armed Forces Day

03 July 2019

Councillor Allen Brett with veterans.

Hundreds of people came together to mark the annual Armed Forces Day as a series of special flag raising events were held at locations across the borough.

Soldiers, veterans, dependants, local councillors, and dignitaries, including council leader Allen Brett, Mayor of Rochdale, Councillor Billy Sheerin, and council chief executive, Steve Rumbelow, turned out to mark the occasion.

The Armed Forces flag was proudly raised, following special dedication services at Rochdale Town Hall, Middleton Memorial Gardens and other locations across the borough.

Armed Forces Day brings local communities together to show their support for the men and women who make up the Armed Forces community, including serving troops, service families, veterans and cadets.

'It was wonderful to see residents across the borough turning out in force'

Councillor Janet Emsley, our lead member for the Armed Forces, attended the services in Rochdale and Middleton. Janet said: "It was wonderful to see residents across the borough turning out in force for the flag raising events. The generations were spanned as, with past and present members of the Armed Forces, the community gathered to pay their respects to fallen comrades and to show their support for serving personnel. We are rightly proud of our armed forces and this day is about saying thanks to those, past and present, who have protected and continue to protect our liberty, freedom and democracy. Thanks to everyone who attended. Lest we forget."

Peter Clegg, a member of the Rochdale branch of the Royal British Legion, said: "It was the most perfect summer's day and it is always an emotional moment to see the flag being raised with the backdrop of Rochdale Town Hall and at Middleton Memorial Gardens. The council is a fantastic supporter of our Armed Forces community and, by working together, we ensure serving members past and present are never forgotten. Thanks to everyone who attended the services in Rochdale and Middleton."

We signed the Armed Forces Community Covenant, aimed at encouraging communities to support services that promote and encourage activities that help integrate armed forces personnel back into civilian life, in 2012.

The Armed Forces breakfast club is held every Thursday at Rochdale Town Hall from 9am-10am.