Mayor of Lisburn & Castlereagh City Council, Cllr Brian Bloomfield MBE, welcomed guests at Lagan Valley Island, 19 June, for this year’s Flag Raising Ceremony to commemorate Armed Forces Week.
The ceremony was attended by Lt Col Karl Frankland, Commanding Officer of NI Garrison Support Unit; Major Mears, 2 The Rifles; Garrison Sergeant Major Green, Thiepval Barracks; representatives from Royal Irish Rifles Association, Irish Great War Society, Ulster Defence Regiment, National Malayan Borneo Veterans Association, Royal British Legion, together with the Chief Executive, Alderman and Councillors from Lisburn & Castlereagh City Council.
By raising the Armed Forces Flag at the Civic Headquarters, the message to residents and visitors is that Lisburn and Castlereagh appreciates the dedication and achievements of all our service personnel, and supports the men and women who make up the Armed Forces community including service families and cadets.
The Mayor addressed those assembled and said: “It is an honour for me in my last engagement, as Mayor of Lisburn & Castlereagh City Council, to commemorate Armed Forces Day. By raising an official flag we show support for the significant contribution made to our country by those who serve and have served in Her Majesty’s Armed Forces.
It was only last week when Lisburn & Castlereagh City Council was joined by the Lord Lieutenant of County Antrim, Mrs Joan Christie OBE, Lieutenant Colonel Frankland, Colonel Rollins MBE, Mr Raymond Corbett and the Sir Jeffrey Donaldson MP in the signing of an official Armed Forces Covenant. The covenant represents a commitment to Armed Forces personnel and their families. We are proud to be the first City Council in Northern Ireland to make this very formal promise to our dedicated Armed Forces community.”
The Mayor invited Lieutenant Colonel Frankland to raise the Armed Forces Flag which was followed by a two minute silence.
When the Flag was raised, guests were asked to take time and reflect on what our veterans have achieved, what our current troops are fighting to achieve and the opportunities that will be offered to future generations of soldiers who are willing to dedicate their lives protecting us.
The flag is an acknowledgement of the bravery, commitment and achievements of the Armed Forces, and pays a special tribute to those who have been injured or sadly lost their lives in the line of duty.
There are hundreds of events organised across the UK to celebrate Armed Forces Week. This year’s national event will happen on Saturday, June 24 in the heart of Liverpool.