PRESS RELEASE: Note: Embargoed until 10.00 am on 16 March 2023.

100 Days to go until Armed Forces Day

Cornwall flagbearers start marching to Armed Forces Day countdown


16thMarch 2023

A giant flag will be unfurled by military personnel to mark 100 days to go until Armed Forces Day, the national event hosted in Cornwall 2023 which celebrates the UK’s military and all they do to keep us safe.

This trailer featuring Bear Grylls OBE gives you a sense of the event’s scale: 

Armed Forces Day is supported by Bear Grylls, a former Reservist in the British Special Forces. The Armed Forces Day countdown begins on Thursday 16 March at 10am to 11am, Pendennis Castle, Falmouth, Cornwall.

A Royal Navy helicopter will make a fly-past as members of the Armed Forces abseil down the walls of Pendennis Castle unfurling the giant Armed Forces Day flag.

A gun-crew will prepare artillery before a ‘cannon salute’ is fired by Royal Air Force Air Commodore Polly Perkins. A detachment of military buglers and drummers will also be front and centre at this ceremonial occasion along with serving military personnel, veterans and cadets.

Pendennis Castle has been chosen for the 100-day milestone. Now in the care of English Heritage, the Tudor fortress has defended Cornwall for hundreds of years and saw service during the World Wars. It is a key landmark in the town of Falmouth – which will be the centre point for Armed Forces Day celebrations for the UK on 24 and 25 June.

The unveiling of the flag starts its 100-day special tour around the length and breadth of Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly culminating in ‘Top Gun’ style stunts from the Red Arrows with other military aerial displays planned at the National Event in June. Along with the parades and service drills there’s a chance to see a range of military vehicles up close. The whole event is free and includes a tour of a naval ship if you book via the website in advance.

Minister for Defence People and Veterans, Dr Andrew Murrison MP, says: “With just 100 days to go until the national event, I am thrilled that the people of Cornwall will come together in Falmouth to show their support for the military community and the work that they do to keep us safe.

“Armed Forces Day is an annual opportunity for members of the public to thank our service personnel and I encourage everyone to get involved, whether that’s attending the national event in Falmouth, a local event or running their own event.”

Bear Grylls OBE says: “As a former member of the British Reserve Special Forces and an Honorary Colonel to the Royal Marines Commandos, I know first-hand how truly incredible our Armed Forces community is. The motivation, commitment and professionalism that’s shown every day by serving personnel is inspirational. Selflessly performing their military duties, often in the most difficult and dangerous of settings. So, I hope people will take this opportunity to show the Armed Forces their appreciation and take part in the celebrations. I know Cornwall is going to deliver a truly fantastic show!”

Regional Air Officer for the South-West of England, Air Commodore Polly Perkins CBE says: “Armed Forces Day is a significant occasion for the people of the UK and provides a very special opportunity for the military services to unite with the very people that we serve. Everything is ready and people will have a great experience, we’re really looking forward to the national celebrations in Cornwall this summer.”

Armed Forces Day is a thank you to serving military personnel, veterans and cadets along with the friends and families who support them. More celebrations are expected around the UK and at British military outposts overseas.

Cornwall Council Leader, Linda Taylor, says: “Armed Forces Day is a special day for the UK and for Cornwall. Cornwall is proud to support Armed Forces Day, the national event, and the countdown starts the march of the flag around the county. I would like to thank everyone for their hard work in getting us to this stage, and I look forward to communities across the UK coming together this summer in Cornwall and thanking the Armed Forces.”

Organisers estimate the Armed Forces Day event in Cornwall 2023 will attract well in excess of 100,000 people and earn about £1m for the local economy. For more information, please visit Home – Armed Forces Day ( or follow Twitter or Facebook @ArmedForcesDay #Cornwall2023 #SaluteOurForces

Note to Editors:

You are invited to the countdown event on Thursday 16 March Pendennis Castle, Falmouth, TR11 4LP. Please arrive 9.45am for 10 – 11am. Photography of 100-day countdown 2023 event will be available here

Armed Forces Day flag route:

Pendennis Castle, Falmouth




RAF St Mawgan, Newquay

Land’s End

Isles of Scilly


RNAS Culdrose, Helston


HMS Raleigh, Torpoint.


Contact Details:

Cornwall Council Communications: 07484 635280 or 

Ministry of Defence media enquiries: 020 7218 7907

Download this press release in docx format below.