Armed Forces Day celebrations at the National Memorial Arboretum

Following a nationwide search, the Curry family have been selected to serve as guests of honour

On 24 June, the National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire will mark Armed Forces Day with a full programme of fun family activities, celebrating the service of all current and former Armed Forces personnel. It offers the opportunity for attendees to learn about the Armed Forces and the rich and varied stories of Armed Forces personnel and their families.

Following a nationwide search, the Curry family has been selected to take a central role in the day’s proceedings, representing the thousands of military families across the United Kingdom. Warrant Officer Paul Curry, a 20-year member of the Royal Navy nominated his family in recognition of the support they have provided him during his time serving in the Armed Forces. Paul and Laura have been together for 17 years and married in 2008. They live in Mickleover, Derbyshire with their three children; Heidi (7), Dylan (5), and April (3).

This flagship family event at the Arboretum celebrates the work of the Armed Forces, and thousands of military and non-military families are expected to join in the festivities. A packed programme of activities and a parade awaits attendees, who will enjoy music from the Band of Royal Corps of Signals, see historic warplanes soar overhead during flypasts (weather depending), and be astounded by a performance from the Defence Medical Services Whittington Field Gun Display team. Our activities are kindly supported by Central England Co-operative.

In addition there will also be:

  • Service of thanks and parade
  • The Ride to the Wall fundraising cheque presentation
  • WWI children’s assault course
  • Climbing walls, mobile cave experience and zip line
  • WWI replica trench
  • Segways
  • Children’s craft
  • Food and gift fair
  • Birds of prey display

The Curry family will help take the salute during the parade, be treated to a special lunch, receive tickets to access the Arboretum’s Landscapes of Life exhibition, and enjoy a private guided tour of the site. The judging panel that selected the Curry family have also awarded sets of Landscapes of Life tickets to all those nominated.

Warrant Office Paul Curry, said: “We are honoured to have been chosen for the privilege of being the guests of honour at Armed Forces Day, and my family are looking forward to what will be a very exciting day. My family are my rock; their love and support is what kept me going during long tours away from home, and I’m pleased that they can enjoy this experience as a thank you for everything they do and have done for me.

“There are thousands of military families up and down the country just like ours, we support each another and our shared experiences bond us together. The challenges we face may not always be the same as other families, but the solution is just the same – we work together to conquer whatever challenge life throws at us.”

Sarah Montgomery, Managing Director of the National Memorial Arboretum said: “Armed Forces Day is a wonderful occasion, where military and civilian families come together to celebrate the hard work of our Armed Forces, day in and day out, at home and abroad. We look forward to welcoming the Curry family as our guests of honour. Over the course of our appeal we were inundated with stories and videos about families of past and present service personnel, from all corners of the country and all service branches, it was incredibly difficult for our judging panel to select just one.

“Armed Forces Day is always a great occasion at the Arboretum, with thousands of military and non-military families gathering to enjoy a wonderful summer’s day out.  It’s an opportunity to learn new things about our Armed Forces and the people who serve within them. We hope to welcome a huge crowd to the Arboretum for the first Armed Forces Day since the opening of our new Remembrance Centre”

Andrew Baud

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