Belfast Telegraph

Pictures and video: Thousands mark Armed Forces Day in Northern Ireland

Thousands travelled to Coleraine as the town celebrated Armed Forces Day on Saturday.

It was first time Coleraine hosted the regional, which attracted a huge number of military personnel, their families, friends and supporters.

The annual event, compered by UTV's Paul Clark opened with a celebratory parade through the town centre featuring 1,200 service members, veterans, cadets, military bands and the Royal British Legion. It weaved its way around the town before arriving at the Diamond for a Drumhead Service.

The spectacle received a rousing reception from the large crowds which lined the route before a time of reflection during a Drumhead Service at the War Memorial.

After the first gun salute of the day at noon there was a packed afternoon of activities in Christie Park, on the River Bann and throughout the town centre.

Tobias Ellwood MP, the UK Government Minister for Defence People and Veterans also attended along with the world-renowned Band of the Royal Marines.

The Defence Minister enjoyed a whistle-stop tour of the event which included a visit to the Royal Navy P2000 vessel docked on the River Bann and the hugely impressive Challenger 2 tank, making a rare appearance.

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