A celebration of the military ‘family’ was held in Cinderford on Sunday (June 30) to mark Armed Forces.

Billy Archer with his Landrover 101.
Billy Archer with his Landrover 101. (Forest Review)
Ross Air Cadets with their tombola
Ross Air Cadets with their tombola (Forest Reviw)
Paul and Nicky Smith displayed some militaria.
Paul and Nicky Smith displayed some militaria. (Paul and Nicky Smith displayed some militaria.)
Guides and Brownies on the cake stall.
Guides and Brownies on the cake stall. (Forest Review)

The Cinderford branch of the Royal British Legion hosted the event at the town’s rugby club which also featured non-military organisations.

At 11am there was a two minute silence to recognise the sacrifice of armed forces personnel and the former chairman of the Cinderford British Legion, Geoff Jones, read The Exhortation and The Kohima Epitaph which are closely associated with Remembrance Sunday.

There was a parade around the rugby field by army, air and sea cadets, led by the Harmony Twirlstars marching band which received a round of applause from all present.

As well as Cinderford army cadets, Ross air cadets and Lydney-based Forest sea cadets, there were also representatives of Crossroads Gloucestershire, mental health charity TIC-plus and Guides and Brownies and there were military vehices.

Chairman of the Cinderford British Legion Mark Evans said planning for the event only started a couple of months ago.

He said: “It is the first one we have done in Cinderford. The main Armed Forces Day event was in Gloucester and we wanted to do something in the community.

“We really wanted to showcase what the youth organisations in the Forest of Dean are doing.

“The rugby club has been fantastic in letting us use the venue. 

Branch vice-chairman Ryan Morgan added: “The Legion has brought it all together to highlight what Armed Forces Day is about from the youth right through to the veterans.

“It’s showing what the kids and different projects are doing. It’s a family event because the armed forces is a family.

“Hopefully next year with a bit more time and planning we can do something even better.”

The Guides ran a cake stall and Ross air cadets had a tombola. The army and sea cadets showed some o the activities they are involved in. 

Paul and Nicky Smith of Coleford brought along some of their militaria which included a copy of the Daily Mirror published on the day the Second World War broke out in 1939.