Posted on June 30, 2018
100,000 expected in Llandudno for Armed Forces Day
A small town in north Wales is preparing to host about 100,000 people for Armed Forces Day.
Llandudno, with a population of roughly 20,000 people, is hosting the event on Saturday and Conwy council predicts a £4m boost to the local economy.
Princess Anne and the prime minister will be attending the celebration, which will kick off with a military parade at 11:00 BST.
Fusilier Shenkin IV, the Royal Welsh regimental goat, will also be there.
Downing Street has also confirmed next year’s event will be held in Salisbury to pay tribute to the armed forces’ response to the nerve agent attack in the city earlier this year.
Theresa May said the 2019 event would “also celebrate the tremendous resilience and great spirit of Salisbury, showing clearly it is open for business.”
Starting at Llandudno War Memorial, this year’s parade will travel down the seafront to Bodafon Fields.
There will be aerial displays from the Red Arrows, a Battle of Britain Memorial Flight and Typhoons.
“There are going to be thousands of people here,” said Councillor Louise Emery.
“The hotels are going to be absolutely rammed.
There will be several road closures in place and those attending are being encouraged to use the park and ride and park and walk services.
The Great Orme toll road will be closed between 08:00 and 12:00 BST on Saturday, while Clarence Crescent and Bodafon Road will be closed between 07:00 and 22:00.
Arriva said park and ride shuttle buses will run from 7am until 9.30pm, and there will be additional carriages on trains.
Police have asked visitors to arrive in good time and to not fly drones.
“The policing operation will be amongst the largest in North Wales Police’s history and will involve over 500 North Wales Police officers and staff,” said Supt Jane Banham.
Mrs May said the annual event was “a way to thank our incredible servicemen and women for their dedication, for the many sacrifices they make and for their extraordinary service and courage”.
In a video message, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn thanked veterans, service personnel and reserves for their “sacrifice, service and dedication”, adding: “And for all your sacrifices and all that you have done for us, we must do so much more for you.”
‘Original Cardiff Bay diva’
In Cardiff, the Celebrating Black Soldiers on Armed Forces Day event will be held at Butetwon Community Hub.
Patti Flynn, a former professional singer known as the “original Cardiff Bay diva”, is organising the event in her capacity as patron of Race Council Cymru.
Ms Flynn’s two brothers and her father were killed during World War Two.
Her brother Arthur, a pilot in the RAF, died in 1944 after the aircraft he was travelling in crashed in Salford.
Ms Flynn’s father Willmott and brother Joclyn died while serving in the merchant navy when their cargo ships were sunk by Nazi U-boats in 1942 and 1941 respectively.
“This event is about marking the contribution of the black and minority ethnic (BME) community, especially because of the Windrush scandal,” said Ms Flynn.
“It’s to make the young aware that their race is something to be proud of.”