Stockton Council is holding a series of special events to mark this year's Armed Forces Day.
The Mayor of Stockton, Councillor Barbara Inman, will open the celebrations on Monday 23 June with a short flag raising ceremony outside Stockton Town Hall.
Join the Mayor as she meets members of the Armed Forces, the British Legion and both serving and retired servicemen and women for the ceremony. Veterans will parade their regimental standards and Retired Lieutenant Colonel Graham Mitchell TD DL will make a speech. Members of the public are welcome to come along to watch and join in with the ceremony which starts at 10.15am.
On Thursday 26 June join the Mayor in Stockton High Street where it will be awash with interesting displays and information stands offering people the opportunity to find out about the past, present and future of the Armed Forces.
Come along from 9.30am to 3pm to browse the stalls and find out more about the Centenary of the First World War through an interactive World War One trench system. Visitors will also be able to visit a special exhibition in the Rediscover Stockton Shop on Stockton High Street called Remembering Our War. The exhibition focusses on how the war affected both local people and places across the Tees Valley.
At 11.45 am to 12.15pm there will also be an open air service of thanks giving for the Armed Forces in the area to the south of the Town Hall.
From 2pm to 4pm Stockton’s Tabernacle will host a tea dance. Everyone is welcome to this free event which will see you step back in time to a bygone era.
As part of the celebrations the Mayor of Stockton will be holding a duck race on Stockton’s Riverside to raise money for three armed forces charities - Rifles, The Yorkshire Regiment Benevolent Fund and 1 Close Support Battalion REME.
Councillor Barbara Inman will launch the ducks into the River Tees from Infinity Marine Café on Saturday 28 June at 1.45pm as part of Stockton Pirate Day.
The Mayor of Stockton, Councillor Barbara Inman, said: "We are all very proud of our troops and Armed Forces Week is a wonderful opportunity to show our thanks to them especially as this year marks the 100th anniversary of the beginning of the First World War.
“I am looking forward to being part of all the celebration events and remembering those who have given their service, and in many cases, their lives to our country. If you would like to show your support for our troops – both those serving and our veterans - please come along to support these events or try your luck and buy a duck.”
You can buy a duck for £1 from the Rediscover Stockton shop at 134 High Street, the Castlegate Centre until 20 June or directly from Stockton Council.
Businesses or retailers can show their support for the Armed Forces by purchasing a larger duck for £100 to take part in the Corporate Duck race taking place on the same day.