YOU TELL US; The North East will celebrate Armed Forces Day on Saturday, with hundreds expected to gather at Newcastle's Exhibition Park. RACHEL WEARMOUTH finds out how the people of Tyneside will be marking the occasion.
THE Countess of Wessex will be the guest of honour at an event to mark Armed Forces Day on Saturday. The Tyne and Wear Diamond Jubilee Gala at Exhibition Park will also celebrate the Queen's 60th year on the throne.
The countess will be attending as Honorary Colonel-in-Chief of Queen Alexandra's Royal Army Nursing Corps, and will be presenting campaign medals to 201 (Northern) Field Hospital (Volunteers), who recently returned from service in Afghanistan. But what will the people of Tyneside be doing to mark the day? We asked staff at the All Saints clothes store in Newcastle city centre.
Tiffany Hall, 30, a senior salesperson, of Washington, Tyne and Wear, said: "My grandfather was in the armed forces so I think we always give to the Help For Heroes charity as a family. I am very proud of the things my grandfather did."
Emma Thompson, 21, a floor manager, from Kenton, Newcastle, said: "I'm not doing anything to mark Armed Forces Day but I would love to because it is something that I do feel strongly about. "I respect people who join the armed forces so much. I think theirs are some of the best jobs you can do." Jennifer Easby, 26, of Teesside, said: "I don't know anyone in the armed forces myself but we get a couple of customers that come in and tell us about it and, from what we can gather, they do a really good job.
"I keep up to date with what they are doing on the news.
"I think they are so brave and I have the greatest of respect for them and you really feel for their families."
The North East will celebrate Armed Forces Day on Saturday, with hundreds expected to gather at Newcastle's Exhibition Park. RACHEL WEARMOUTH finds out how the people of Tyneside will be marking the occasion