Southend was privileged to have CGS General Sir Richard Dannatt take the salute at the parade which formed the highlight of the town's celebrations for Armed Forces Day.
On parade were soldiers from the 3rd Battalion The Royal Anglian Regiment, members of other TA units and representatives from local veterans' groups. A military band led the march along Southend High Street to the (somewhat cramped) open area at the top of Pier Hill where the General took the salute before he was whisked off to some other AFD event at Chatham or somewhere.
Despite the lack of publicity, there was a good turn out by local residents who applauded and cheered the guys to show their support and their appreciation for the work they were doing.
The day ended with a red, white and blue balloon race which raised money for "Smiles across the Miles", a local group of volunteers who send parcels of goodies out to the guys 'n gals serving on the frontline.
AquilaVictrix: Photos of the Armed Forces Day parade at Southend
Southend Standard: A day to show how really proud we are of our armed forces