Stirling set to host military parade for the return of Armed Forces Day

The Royal Regiment of Scotland is set to parade through Stirling to mark the return of Armed Forces Day (AFD) to the city in 2023.

holding Stirling’s Armed Forces Day flag in the Council Chambers are (from left) Cllr Paul Henke (Stirling Council Local Veterans’ Champion), Cllr Bryan Flannagan (Stirling Council Local Veterans’ Champion), Cllr Chris Kane (Stirling Council Leader), and Cllr Gene Maxwell (Stirling Council Armed Forces Champion).
Pictured are (from left) Cllr Paul Henke (Local Veterans’ Champion), Cllr Bryan Flannagan (SC Local Veterans’ Champion), Cllr Chris Kane (SC Leader), and Cllr Gene Maxwell (SC Armed Forces Champion).

Scheduled for Saturday 24 June next year, the parade would see personnel, reservists, cadets and veterans of the Regiment march through the historic heart of Stirling, followed a civic welcome and a family event at the Smith Museum and Art Gallery.

Up until 2019, the Stirling AFD included a military show (a free family event in Kings Park) that was organised by the Army with support from the Council. 

In 2020, the Army planned to hold a military parade. However, this was cancelled due to the pandemic.

At last Thursday’s (8 Dec) full Meeting of Council, it was agreed that the Regiment holding a parade was the preferred option to be explored for the return of the event in 2023.

Proud to support Armed Forces Day

Stirling Council Leader, Cllr Chris Kane: “Stirling is proud to support Armed Forces Day. The event gives us the opportunity to recognise the services of our Armed Forces, including service troops, service families, veterans and cadets.

“Stirling has strong and enduring links with the military, and it would be a fantastic spectacle if the Regiment marches through the city to allow the people of Stirling to show their appreciation and gratitude for our Armed Forces.” 

At the last meeting of Council in October, a motion was passed for Stirling to again host AFD, and for Council Officers to engage with all groups and independent Councillors to produce a report on the available options to bring the event back in 2023. Any event of scale could only take place with the full involvement and support of the Armed Forces. 

In March 2012, The Royal Regiment of Scotland (SCOTS) was granted the Freedom of the City and exercised their right to march through the city from Stirling Castle to Old Viewforth. The Regiment has confirmed they would be in a position to exercise this option on 24 June next year.

A meeting between Council Officers and a cross section of armed forces representatives will now take place to progress this plan.

Honour our military personnel

Stirling Council Local Veterans' Champion, Cllr Bryan Flannagan said: “It’s vital we honour our military personnel past and present and show and I’m delighted that Armed Forces Day is returning to Stirling next year.

“We have arrived at the decision to request a military parade and host a family event following cross-party engagement and there has been a real enthusiasm to make this happen by everyone involved.

“I would like to thank Officers for their hard work in getting us to this stage, and I look forward to our communities coming together next June to thank the Armed Forces community for everything they do to keep us safe.”  

Other options that were considered for an AFD in Stirling next year included: a Military Show at Kings Park (Cost to the Council of £50,000); a celebratory event involving all local supporting organisations of the Armed Forces Covenant, and a family day at the Albert Halls to show support for the Armed Forces community (cost in the region of £2,500).

To download the agenda papers for Thursday’s Council meeting, please head here. A recording of the meeting is available on the Council’s online broadcasting platform.