City ceremony starts Armed Forces Week in Norwich

Armed forces members were honoured and celebrated as Armed Forces Week began today.

Flags were raised and drums banged as proud veterans and serving military personnel paraded to start the week ahead of Armed Forces Day Saturday.

Both city and county councils held civic ceremonies outside their respective buildings.

Current Royal Anglian Regiment soldiers joined standard bearing veterans for a morning procession outside City Hall, joined by civil dignitaries including Sheriff of Norwich John Jennings, Norwich Chief Inspector Dennis Lacey, Norfolk Coroner William Armstrong and Rev Janet Wyer of St Peter Mancroft Church, who lead a prayer for those serving in conflicts.

At City Hall on St Peters Street, Lord Mayor of Norwich Ralph Gayton said: 'We are all proud of our troops and public respect is important, they should wear their uniforms with pride. Our thoughts are with those in conflicts around the world.'

Standards carried represented the Norfolk Veterans Association, British Korean Veterans Association, Royal British legion, Royal Engineers and the Parachute Regiment, among others.

Private George Scott, from Gibbs Close, Little Melton, has spent two weeks with the Royal Anglians and is waiting to be deployed to Helmand Province, Afghanistan.

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Mr Scott said: 'It gives you that fuzzy feeling inside I guess, to stand on parade with people. It brings you closer to the battalion; I am still bonding with them at the moment.

'Seeing the public come out makes you proud to be a soldier.'

Armed Forces Day is this Saturday, to find an event near to you visit