Scarborough is flying its flag for the Armed Forces as the town prepares to host thousands of people in tribute to service men and women past present and future.
An official flag raising ceremony was held at the Town Hall on Monday, ahead of Armed Forces Day on Saturday.
At 10.30am Scarborough joined towns across the country in raising its flag, with a ceremony in St Nicholas Gardens led by the mayor, cllr Andrew Backhouse, with representation from the Royal British Legion and local veterans and cadets.
Children from Graham School and a number of visiting Spanish students also attended the ceremony and afterwards had the chance to talk to some of the veterans.
Cllr Backhouse said: “It is a privilege for the Mayoress and I to be involved in this very special ceremony, which means so much to all those individuals and families that have connections to our Armed Forces.
“It gives us time to reflect and show our support to the many service men and women who are dedicated to helping to restore peace throughout the world, very often in extremely difficult circumstances.”
Thousands of people are set to enjoy a packed Armed Forces day on Saturday, with one of the day’s highlights being an air display by the Red Arrows at 2pm.
The annual event is this year also set to feature RAF Typhoon fighter planes, a flypast involving the historic Spitfire, Lancaster and Hurricane aircraft which make up the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight, a display from the Ravens Parachute Display Team, an RAF Sea King helicopter flypast, veterans’ parade, beach boot camp, two flight simulators, one from the Royal Air Force Associations Wings Appeal and the other the Help For Heroes Experience simulator, equipment displays and vintage military vehicles.
Rowena Marsden, Scarborough Armed Forces Day manager said: “The planning and organising for this year’s event is almost complete and I am pleased to say that we have had a bumper response from local businesses willing to either sponsor or provide in kind contributions and I would like to thank them for their support towards this very special day.
“This year we have been very fortunate to scoop the only Red Arrows display in England on Armed Forces Day and we have just had confirmation that the Yorkshire Regiment is bringing a beach assault course as well as the paintball range, field kitchen and weaponry display.”
Military families visiting Scarborough on the day being invited to visit the Heroes Welcome tent outside the RNLI lifeboat station to claim a resort hosting pack, which will contain freebies and special offers.
To allow the event to go ahead, Foreshore Road will be closed in both directions from 7am until 7pm between the West Pier and Aquarium Top roundabout.
This year’s Armed Forces Day in Scarborough is being hosted and organised by Scarborough Council and Welcome to Yorkshire in partnership with the Royal Air Force, Heroes Welcome scheme, South Bay Traders Association and Royal British Legion, with financial support from the Ministry of Defence and the council.
The event will start at 12pm when the Band of Yorkshire Volunteers will arrive at the formal area in Foreshore Road for town crier Alan Booth to declare the start of Scarborough Armed Forces Day 2013. The day will run until 5pm when the RAF Sea King helicopter will close the event with a fly past.