A fly-past by two Second World War fighter planes will be a thrilling end to Banbury’s Armed Forces Day on Saturday June 26.
It will be the first public event in Banbury since coronavirus restrictions were first imposed in March 2020 – though some Covid measures will still be in force.
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Local reserve forces and cadets will take part in static displays and parades as the town honours Britain’s service men and women, past and present.
A selection of stalls displaying and demonstrating military equipment will open at 10am.
Oxford Sea Cadets’ Band will play a selection of wartime marches from 11.20am before leading a parade of veterans, serving men and women and cadets through the town (Covid restrictions and weather permitting) at 11.45am.
A salute will be taken by the Lord Lieutenant of Oxfordshire Tim Stevenson OBE.
A drumhead service at 1.30pm, also in the Market Place, will be an emotional reminder of how troops prayed on the battlefield using stacks of drums as makeshift altars.
The fly-past by a Spitfire and a Hawker Hurricane will take place at 2.12pm.
Leader of the Banbury Town Council Kieron Mallon, a former Irish Guardsman who is also president of the Royal British Legion’s local branch, said: “Banbury has a significant military history and Armed Forces Day is an important event that pays tribute to current service personnel, veterans, cadets, and those no longer with us.
“Armed Forces Week is a national event that starts on Monday 21 June and runs until Armed Forces Day on the 26th.
“We will raise the Armed Forces Flag above Banbury Town Hall on Monday 21st.”