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Armed Forces Week is marked in Skipton

The Armed Forces Flag was raised at Skipton Town Hall on Monday June 19, to mark the start of Armed Forces Week.

armed forces flag 2017

A ceremony was hosted by Craven District Council chairman, Councillor Stephen Place, and attended by the Mayor of Skipton, Andy Rankine, veterans from the Royal British Legion, and the Revd Veronica James, Rector of Holy Trinity Church, who blessed the flag.

The flag was raised at 10am, coinciding with similar ceremonies across the UK.

The Armed Forces Week will conclude with Armed Forces Day on Sunday June 25. There will be a parade of cadets and veterans at 3.30pm followed by the lowering of the flag, with refreshments provided afterwards in Holy Trinity Church.

The flag will be presented to Lieutenant Colonel Laurence Smith MBE, who served in the Royal Artillery from 1963 to 2003. He began as a gunner and worked his way up through the ranks, serving in Germany, the Far East, Northern Ireland, the Falklands and the Gulf War.

Lt Col Smith now lives in Sutton-in-Craven with his wife Barbara, with whom he has two children, and since retiring from the Forces has worked with SSAFA, the UK charity which provides welfare and support for those serving in the armed forces, veterans and armed forces families. In November 2002 he was awarded the RA Medal, the Gunners top honour, for outstanding contribution to the Royal Artillery over the years.

Armed Forces Day is being organised by Craven District Council, the Royal British Legion and Skipton Town Council.