Thousands cheer troops at Armed Forces Day in Plymouth

Plymouth parade Cadets marched though Plymouth at the start of Armed Forces Day

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Thousands of people waved flags and cheered as service personnel paraded through Plymouth to mark the start of Armed Forces Day.

The national event to support British troops around the world is being hosted by the city, with David Cameron and the Earl of Wessex in attendance.

It included a parade of about 1,200 service personnel, veterans and cadets on Plymouth Hoe.

Start Quote

David Cameron

This is about celebrating the enormous contribution that the armed forces make every day of the year”

End Quote David Cameron Prime Minister

Plymouth is the headquarters of 3 Commando Brigade.

Devonport in the city is home to the largest naval base in western Europe.

Saturday started with a roar as an RAF Typhoon performed an aerobatic display over the Hoe.

Mr Cameron said: "This is about celebrating the enormous contribution that the armed forces make every day of the year.

"And it's an opportunity for cities like Plymouth and civilians to come out and say how much we revere and support our armed forces.

"As prime minister it's a huge pleasure and a privilege to be involved in this coming together of the armed services on one hand, civilians on the other and say we really respect what you do."

Mayor of Plymouth Councillor Michael Wright said: "The city is incredibly proud to be hosting Armed Forces Day and paying tribute to the immense courage and professionalism shown by men and women serving our country at home and overseas."

Royal Navy frigate HMS Argyll sailed through Plymouth Sound and fired a 21-gun salute.

Following the Argyll was Royal Fleet Auxiliary ship Mounts Bay, filled with children from local schools and their families.

In return members of 29 Commando Regiment Royal Artillery fired a gun salute on behalf of Plymouth from the battlements of the Royal Citadel.

An air show by the Red Arrows concluded the day.

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