Thousands fill East Green at a fantastic Littlehampton Armed Forces Day

AFD Family

Thousands of residents and visitors came out to join in a very successful day for 2019’s Littlehampton Armed Forces Day in aid of the Royal British Legion to celebrate and honour those that serve and have served in the Armed Forces.

At 10.30am local veterans and uniformed groups mustered at Arun Parade before marching down South Terrace and into the East Green arena to take part in a traditional Drumhead Service which kicked off a packed day of attractions and entertainment.

Spectators surrounding the main arena were treated to two performances from Motorcycle Stunt Display Artist; Flyin Ryan. Ryan along with his assistants James and Tina put on an impressive show by taking on numerous death-defying stunts and jumps. Crowds cheered Ryan and his team as they leaped through an explosion of fire and over one of our featured armoured vehicles; a Bedford Lorry.

More exciting entertainment followed, with the Boultbee Spitfire flying display against the backdrop of perfect blue sky and a packed beach, an Armoured Vehicles Display, an arena performance by the Gatwick Caledonian Pipe Band and the BBMF Spitfire flypast. Visitors also enjoyed exploring the wide range of military vehicles and fire engines, supplied by local enthusiasts.

Other Highlight attractions included the Cadets Massed Band performance on the Stage by the Sea, a Vintage Market, the Scouts Crate Challenge, Allsorts Airsoft Shooting Range, Army Cadets Archery Tag, the Littlehampton Museum tent which attracted over 600 people and a Charity Fair, where local uniformed groups and charities attracted plenty of visitors with an array of stalls. To top off what was already a fantastic day, spectators were also able to visit one of the Dunkirk Little Ships ‘Caronia’ which was docked at the Visitors’ Pontoon in Littlehampton Harbour for the duration event.

Over £1,000 was raised for the Royal British Legion poppy Appeal. On behalf of Littlehampton Town Council, Vice Chair of the Community Resources Committee, Councillor Freddie Tandy said: “It was a great day from start to finish. I would like to thank all of the community groups, performers and contractors who helped our events team make the day happen. The event continues to be so well supported and it is fantastic to see so many people of all ages enjoying themselves. I would also like to thank Harbour Park in particular who support the event each year.’’

Deputy Town Mayor, Councillor David Chace added; ‘’The event is one of best attended in the Town calendar and this year certainly didn’t disappoint. From the parade to the flypast, it was a fantastic event from start to finish, thank you to everyone involved. I’d also like to express my thanks to the RNLI, Foreshore Office, Coastguard and Harbour Board who all assisted our officers with both the aerial display and BBMF flypast.’’