Burton-on-Trent — 25–26 June 2022
Armed Forces Weekend
The Arboretum, part of The Royal British Legion, has supported Armed Forces Day since 2009.
In that time our experienced team have developed our event format from one day to a full weekend, broadened content and driven growth in participation from under 5,000 visitors in 2014 to nearly 12,000 in 2019. With the addition of online engagement we anticipate significant growth for 2022.
As a national site of military remembrance our event forms part of a high-quality annual programme of events to recognise our Armed Forces and, as the second biggest event after the main national event, makes a major contribution to the Armed Forces Day national programme.
The NMA is planning a week-long hybrid event to celebrate the diversity of the Armed Forces community. This will enable us to enhance the inclusivity of our celebrations and appeal to a broader and more diverse audience.
Kicking off with the raising of the Armed Forces Day flag, throughout the week we will be sharing with our online audience stories linked with Remembrance and what being a member of the Armed Forces is really like. The programme of activities will encourage people of all ages and backgrounds to come together – whether in person or virtually – to share and celebrate the vital contribution of our Armed Forces. We will be producing a toolkit to help people engage with our celebrations from home and on Saturday and Sunday will be producing a fun weekend of activities for families of all ages to enjoy and learn more about our Armed Forces.
It is vital to us that as the place ‘Where our Nation Remembers’, our visitors are representative of the community as
a whole, and reflect the multi-cultural diversity from which our Armed Forces are recruited. The Arboretum has a deep commitment to engaging with people from all backgrounds and our Armed Forces Weekend event is always reflective of this. Our rich Participation and Learning Programme ensures that the Arboretum engages with a diverse audience
through a wide range of activities. Where possible, all activities will be accessible, inclusive and engaging, and we aim to provide a welcoming and enjoyable atmosphere, encouraging people from all backgrounds and of all abilities to engage with Armed Forces Day. Thanks to our ongoing inclusion work the Arboretum is now a dementia friendly site.
The inclusion of cadets, displays and military bands will help to ensure a wide variety of service types and activities
form part of our programme of activities. Within this line up there will be a mixture of ages, genders and backgrounds for us to celebrate. Our guided walks feature memorials dedicated to Armed Forces personnel from a broad range of backgrounds including Sikh, Gurkha and many Commonwealth memorials.
Event contents of the weekend specifically:
Service of tribute
We will be holding a service in the amphitheatre to recognise the work of our UK Armed Forces, and come together in thanking them for their hard work.
There will be a broad spectrum of activities for the whole family to enjoy- a WWII assault course, climbing wall, free drop air bag, and much more.
Across the weekend two military bands will be performing to join in the celebrations, playing a host of live music for visitors.
Food and Craft Fair
Stalls from a range of local sellers and small businesses for all visitors to peruse
The weekend will see the handover of the annual donation cheque from Ride to the Wall (many serving or ex-military) to support the Arboretum and Armed Forces community