Armed Forces Week returns for 2015
Blackpool’s Armed Forces Week is back and promises an exciting line-up of events and entertainment to honour the nation’s military personnel.
The annual celebration has been running in Blackpool since 2006 and has become a permanent fixture in the resort’s events calendar, bringing thousands of people to town.
And this year’s Armed Forces Week will be no different with a huge range of things to do between June 22 and June 28 in Britain’s best seaside resort.
Cllr Chris Ryan, Chairman of the Armed Forces Week Committee, said: “Armed Forces Week is back for 2015 and will be as fantastic as ever.
“This year, Armed Forces Day will focus on Blackpool town centre and promises to be a superb event which will allow visitors to the town centre to take part and appreciate what the week is all about.
“On top of that we have events, concerts and shows going on throughout the week that will showcase the very best the town and the armed forces have to offer.
“It promises to be a real treat for visitors, local people, veterans and service personnel alike and I hope people will flock to Blackpool and salute and honour our veterans and service personnel.”
Armed Forces Day itself, on Saturday June 27, promises “an interactive, fun-filled and educational day” of events at St John’s Square and on Blackpool Promenade featuring a variety of military vehicles and displays from modern and world war eras.
In St John’s Square, visitors who are feeling fit can take part take part in drill training with a real-life Sergeant Major, try out their skills or even test out our military-style climbing wall.
Those with more of an eye for education can get up-close and personal with a real-life Spitfire and meet World War Two Navy veterans who will talk about their experiences.
And on the Promenade, a Royal Navy helicopter will be displayed along with a replica Messerschmitt ME109, an RAF Spitfire flypast, a Royal Navy Lynx helicopter air display and much more.
The entertainment does not stop there though with the Armed Forces Day Military Concert taking place in the evening at the Norbreck Castle Hotel featuring the Band and Corps of Drums of The Royal Regiment of Fusiliers (Lancashire).
A precursor to the week takes place on Saturday June 20 in St John’s Square.
Blackpool’s Strongest Man competition will recreate the magic of the World’s Strongest Man contest with Greg “The Man Mountain” Dunnings, a 6’7, 25 stone Afghanistan veteran who now works for the Our Local Heroes Foundation charity, in charge of proceedings.
Events will include the famous “truck pull”, “farmers walk” and the “yoke carry” in what should be a fantastic day of family fun.
Monday 22 June will see the official Armed Forces Week flag raised to signal the official start of the week at Blackpool Town Hall ahead of an evening of entertainment entitled “Music for Heroes” at the Opera House.
Tuesday sees an Armed Forces Career Information Day at Blackpool Central Library and Viva Blackpool’s matinee show “We’ll Meet Again” show produced by Blackpool showbiz legend Duggie Chapman MBE.
Wednesday, meanwhile, features an afternoon tea dance at The Blackpool Tower and a free evening of entertainment at Marton Institute.
From Tuesday to Thursday, local schoolchildren will also be taking part in Armed Forces Week with the “Going to the Flicks” project, taking them from the classroom to the Odeon cinema, Blackpool, for a special war time experience including films and talks for military personnel.
Friday features a Service of Dedication at the Fylde Memorial Arboretum to commemorate our Armed Forces and veterans while the evening sees what many veterans consider the highlight of the week, the Grand Gala Dinner.
And following Saturday’s Armed Forces Day celebrations, the week ends with the Blackpool Taxi Pulll, an annual event which sees local cabbies show off their strength to raise money for Armed Forces charities and, most importantly, the Sunday morning service and parade.
It is hoped the public will, once again, turn out in their droves for the parade and show their support for our brave soldiers and military personnel both past and present.
The full programme for Armed Forces Week, and more details about individual events, is available at www.armedforcesweek.co.uk
NOTES TO EDITORS:
VisitBlackpool is the tourism arm of Blackpool Council and is tasked with promoting the UK's most popular holiday destination to leisure and business visitors, both domestically and internationally.
Blackpool’s Back – Merlin Entertainments – which runs a host of attractions in the town including The Blackpool Tower, Madame Tussauds and Sea Life – together with Visit Blackpool, are driving the exciting family-focused awareness campaign to re-energise the iconic seaside resort. The initiative #Blackpoolsback aims to challenge any negative perceptions of the resort, by reminding families of everything Blackpool has to offer. This includes an unrivalled concentration of world-class family attractions, an award-winning beach as well as a summer packed with exciting events.