Weymouth and Portland celebrated our armed forces with a weekend of remembrance.

Veterans, organisations and enthusiasts came together to pay tribute to the armed forces and remember those who gave their lives. 

The warm sunshine brought thousands of visitors to Weymouth seafront as the borough’s Armed Forces Day events kicked off. Visitors gathered at a military display at the Pavilion on Saturday which was followed by a procession towards Portland Castle. 

Yesterday witnessed one of the highlights of the Armed Forces Day events; a major military parade with almost 2,000 veterans, marching bands and more than 80 historic military vehicles.

It was preceded by an open-air service at the British Cenotaph on Weymouth seafront.

Tommy Sammons, 90, an ex-SAS soldier from Christchurch, comes to the parade every year. 

He said: “It means that I can see all my friends, all the people I have been in the forces with.

“There’s not many of us left. It means a lot.”

John Comber, 89, has lived in Weymouth for almost 60 years. He says the veteran’s weekend still brings back many memories of when he was in the Royal Navy. 

At the military display, he said: “I saw a vehicle here that I used to drive in.

“It’s nice that they are remembered, they should be remembered, it was a very tragic time. I lived in London as a boy and saw a lot of the bombing.”

Weymouth is known for its tradition of supporting the armed forces events, and organisers welcomed a £7,500 grant from the Ministry of Defence to help fund the celebrations.

John Flatt is an enthusiast who has been organising Living Military History events for around 18 years. 

He said: “It’s all part of remembrance for veterans, not just for WWII but for all conflicts.

“What’s lovely is you’ll see elderly ladies, who were only very young when the war started, and it brings back many memories for them and that’s what it’s all about.

“People put their life and soul into it.”