A TROWBRIDGE Town Councillor has dismissed claims that the town failed to celebrate the national Armed Forces Day on Saturday.

Councillor Antonio Piazza, the town and Wiltshire Council ward member for Drynham, said a group of volunteers decided last year to organise an event in Trowbridge on September 10 for all uniformed services rather than celebrating Armed Forces Day as many other towns and cities did.

“The Armed Forces Day celebrations in Trowbridge had previously been organised by a committee that disbanded during Covid-19.

“The committee was made up of volunteers who organised the event and after 16 years chose to call it a day. We will always be thankful for their service.

“As a result, a separate event was organised by a volunteer group, that I am part of, in September called the Uniform Services Day Trowbridge, which will incorporate the Armed Forces but also the NHS, Fire Brigade, Police, and other uniformed heroes.

“Many of the members of this group are ex-Forces but, for so many of us, it is the first time we have organised a large event of this nature."

But the organisers of the Uniform Services Day- including Cllr Piazza are also struggling to get military vehicles to celebrate the armed forces.

Cllr Piazza said: “It is a real struggle to get hold of military vehicles because of the crisis in Ukraine.

“In ordinary times, we would be celebrating the occasion in Trowbridge Park with a host of military vehicles and servicemen marching through the town.

“Although the media has stopped focusing so much on the situation in Eastern Europe, we must remember that these are not ordinary times.

“We are currently struggling to get in touch with military contacts and getting hold of vehicles is proving to be tougher.”

Cllr Piazza said that next year the town is planning to organise an Armed Forces Day in June: "So in some respect this event is testing the waters but equally it is an event in its own right.

“We will keep on pushing so that we have a great military presence at both the Uniform Services Day Trowbridge in September 2022 and Trowbridge Armed Forces Day in June 2023. Our Armed Forces and Veterans deserve nothing but the best.

“I can vouch for the new team, many who are ex-Forces, who are working hard behind the scenes to give our servicemen and servicewomen a 'thank you' that the county town can be proud of.”