The Truro Community Flag Relay event in the run-up to National Armed Forces Day took place on Reserves Day at the Army Reserve Centre in Moresk Road.

The event served to celebrate and show support for the Armed Forces men and women, past and present, and in particular the reservists who support the regular military alongside day-to-day jobs.

Deputy Lieutenant Col Tom French OBE presided over the ceremony, which was also attended by D Company 6 RIFLES, military reservists, cadets and veterans, and dignitaries from Cornwall Council.

The event was opened by Truro town crier Lionel Knight, then the Armed Forces Day flag was presented by Major Tom Roden of D Company 6 RIFLES to Truro mayor Cllr Carol Swain, to raise on the city council’s own flagpole.

Cllr Swain said: “This flag will now be raised as a token of our respect for all Armed Forces personnel who live in Cornwall and elsewhere, for the enormous contribution they have made over the decades and continue to make, protecting our democracy and liberty.”

6 Rifles is the Army infantry reserve unit in the South West, with around 90 reservist soldiers split between Truro and Plymouth and serving in their spare time.

Major Tom Roden works on the operational side at the Royal Cornwall Hospital. “I find the work really rewarding and the skills I use in the reserves are also useful for the demands of the NHS at the moment,” he said. “Reserves Day is a good opportunity to get the message out that we would love anyone to come along on a Tuesday evening and see what we do.”

Deputy Lieutenant, Col Tom French OBE, had a long career in the Light Infantry and is planning to march with veterans in Falmouth on Saturday. “This is a wonderful opportunity to Cornish people to show their appreciation for the dedication and professionalism of our Armed Forces, from regulars and reservists to cadets and veterans,” he said.

Corporal Walt Smith, 91, served in the Air Movement Section at RAF Lyneham in Wiltshire, and recalled unloading casualties from the Korean War. “It’s important to remember the service veterans have given during their lives,” he said. “Many of them went out and didn’t come back. They are as much in my mind at this time as those of us who did.”

Three air cadets represented the Combined Cadet Forces of Penair School, one of the top CCFs in the South West region. Corporal Amelia Parker, 15, said: “I feel honoured to have been selected to be here today. There are a lot of important people here, and as I am thinking about joining the Armed Forces, I’m really enjoying the experience of seeing what life could be like.