29 June 2024

Armed Forces Day

Armed Forces Day 2023: 100 days to go!

At the end of June, communities across the UK will come together to celebrate the Armed Forces and all that they do in keeping the nation safe.

The 16th of March marks 100 days to go until this year’s Armed Forces Day, which is taking place in Falmouth, Cornwall.

Armed Forces Day will recognise the work that members of the Royal Navy, British Army and Royal Air Force, as well as Veterans, Cadets and Armed Forces families all play in keeping the UK safe, at home and abroad.

Marking 100 days to go until the national event, members of the Armed Forces were at Pendennis Castle in Falmouth, raising the Armed Forces Day flag to formally start the countdown. They were joined by a Royal Navy Merlin helicopter overhead before personnel from 24 Commando Regiment, The Royal Engineers abseiled down the castle walls unfurling a larger flag.

Minister for Defence People and Veterans, Dr Andrew Murrison MP said:

“With just 100 days to go until the national event, I am thrilled that the people of Cornwall will come together in Falmouth to show their support for the military community and the work that they do to keep us safe.

Armed Forces Day is an annual opportunity for members of the public to thank our service personnel and I encourage everyone to get involved, whether that’s attending the national event in Falmouth, a local event or running their own.”

Members of the British public fly Union Jack flags as the attend the event.

Facts about Armed Forces Day:

  • It was initially named Veterans Day up until 2009 when it was changed to ‘Armed Forces Day’.
  • The date was chosen as it was the day after the first investiture of the Victoria Cross in Hyde Park, in 1847.
  • Although an official event, it is not a public holiday in the UK.
British Army soldiers dressed in ceromonial uniforms march in line down the street as part of the event.

Armed Forces Day takes place on the last Saturday of each June, but celebrations officially begin on the Monday beforehand when the Armed Forces Day flag is raised on buildings and famous landmarks around the country.

Showing support for the Armed Forces provides a much-valued morale boost for military personnel and their families.

Armed Forces veterans stand in a row whilst wearing the ceromonial uniform.

Regional Air Officer for South West England, Air Commodore Polly Perkins MP said:

‘’Armed Forces Day is a significant occasion for the people of the UK and provides a very special opportunity for the military services to unite with the very people that we serve.’’


This year’s national event is taking place in Cornwall on Saturday 24 June. Falmouth will play host to a military parade, flypast and will allow the public to learn more about what our Armed Forces do.

Cornwall Council Leader, Linda Taylor said:

“Armed Forces Day is a big deal for the UK and for Cornwall. Cornwall is proud to support Armed Forces Day and host this year’s national event.”

Former Reservist, Bear Grylls MBE said:

“As a former member of the British Reserve Special Forces and Honorary Colonel to the Royal Marines Commandos, I know first-hand how truly incredible our Armed Forces community is. The motivation, commitment and professionalism that’s shown every day by serving personnel is inspirational.”

From the Shetland Islands to Southampton, members of the public can host their own Armed Forces Day events on the 24th of June in their local communities. For more information on hosting your own event, Armed Forces Day resources and how to apply for funding, visit the official Armed Forces Day website.

See previous events that UK Armed Forces have participated in here: