DESPITE the coronavirus pandemic Richmondshire District Council marked support for the armed forces by flying a special flag for National Armed Forces Day.

The flag was raised by Chairman of the council, councillor Stuart Parsons at a ceremony in the Friary Gardens in Richmond. The district has a long association with the armed forces with Britain's largest garrison on the doorstep at Catterick where thousands of troops and their families are based.

Normally to celebrate National Armed Forces Day flying the flag would be attended by representatives from a wide range of organisations including military services, councils, police and Help for Heroes.

Because of the coronavirus restrictions and to ensure limitation of the risks the ceremony was confined to simply raising the flag as a mark of respect.

Cllr Parsons said: "Despite the pandemic, it is important that our Armed Forces are shown support and gratitude for the huge personal sacrifices they have made and continue to make for our country. Service personnel are hugely important to Richmondshire district and they have played, and will continue to play, a part in getting the district through this crisis."

National Armed Forces Day is on June 27, the Richmondshire flag will be flown from June 22 until June 29.