Thousands Visit Jordanstown For Armed Forces Day 2024

Thousands attended Jordanstown Loughshore Park to mark Armed Forces Day 2024 as the red arrows and the military parade put on a display.

The event which took place on Saturday 22 June, included a military parade involving over 600 serving military, veterans and cadets, including the Band of HM Royal Marines (Scotland) and the Band of the Royal Irish Regiment, who entertained the crowds lining the route as the parade made its way from Whiteabbey War Memorial to Jordanstown Loughshore Park.

The Red Arrows captivated spectators with their aerobatic display during their Diamond Season celebrations. Enthusiasts from all over gathered to witness the new nine-aircraft show, showcasing moves that hadn't been performed in decades.

The Mayor of Antrim and Newtownabbey, Councillor Neil Kelly and Lord-Lieutenant Mr David McCorkell KStJ unveiled a special D-Day plaque paying tribute to the bravery and sacrifice of all those involved in the Normandy campaign.

The carnival atmosphere at Jordanstown Loughshore Park was heightened by a flypast by the RAF Tutor, a gun salute, live music, the Military Village, and family entertainment. Thousands gathered to celebrate Armed Forces Day 2024, enjoying the vibrant festivities.
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Mayor of Antrim and Newtownabbey Councillor Neil Kelly commented: "It is a great honour for me as Mayor to host this prestigious event in Newtownabbey. I would like to express my appreciation to the military for giving the Council the opportunity to host this event again in our Borough. I would like to thank everyone who attended today, and also thank our stakeholders, staff, and volunteers for making the day such an enjoyable experience."

Senior Naval Officer NI Cdr Rob Milligan MBA FCMI CMgr, said: "What a fantastic day in Newtownabbey at Loughshore Park, where ship’s company from HMS HIBERNIA proudly paraded as part of the tri-service event. I was also delighted to have the Royal Marines Band (Scotland) here to take part in Armed Forces Day this year, as well as giving them the opportunity to attend some other events in the Borough over the weekend."

Lieutenant Colonel Kevin Thomas MBE RE stated: "On behalf of 38 (Irish) Brigade I would like to thank the Councillors, the officers and staff of Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council for hosting what we all believe was a superb Armed Forces Day. Amazing to see so many people attending the event to show their support for the Armed Forces in Northern Ireland and enjoying the equipment the army had on display."

Air Marshal Sean Reynolds CB CBE DFC RAFR Air Officer NI said: "It was great to see so many people come along today to show their support to our men and women who make up the Armed Forces community in Northern Ireland. The RAF Red Arrows displaying in their diamond season was the highlight of the day and demonstrates, amongst many, the capabilities of the Royal Air Force."

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