HUNDREDS of military personnel were present in the city today as the 40th anniversary of the Falklands War was commemorated.

This ceremony started with a raising of the Falkland Islands flag, presented to the people of Carlisle from the Government and people of the Islands, by Richard Hyslop, the Falkands Islands Government Representative to the United Kingdom and Europe at 12:30pm.

The flag was received by the Mayor of Carlisle, Pamela Birks, and MP for Carlisle, John Stevenson.

More than 100 Falklands veterans marched from the South Atlantic Medal Association in the city centre following this prestigious ceremony, attracting the awe of the public who were standing by watching.

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Starting from the grounds of Carlisle Cathedral, they were led by Pipe Major Steven Duffy as they marched to the Cenotaph in Greenmarket.

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At the Cenotaph a short dignified service was held followed by the laying of wreaths in remembrance of all servicemen who lost their lives during the Falklands campaign in 1982.

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Among those laying wreaths were representatives of the military, MPs for Carlisle and Dumfries and Galloway, Mayor Pamela Birks, the High Sheriff of Cumbria, and the Lord’s Lieutenant.

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A commemorative service was then held at St Cuthbert’s Church at 3pm led by Padre David Cooper, Padre to the Second Battalion the Parachute Regiment during the Falklands campaign, followed by refreshments at the Tithe Barn.

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Pamela Birks said: “Today it’s about remembering those people who suffered in the Falklands from the Argentinians and troops that we lost on both sides.

“We need to be mindful that we are so lucky in this country with our freedoms and our democracies, we don’t want conflicts again, and let’s hope we’re not going to tumble into anything unexpectedly over the next few months.”

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John Stevenson MP said: “I think it’s a very special moment for the city, there is a strong connection obviously through the military in terms of the number of people from here who fought in the Falklands conflict.

“I think it was a very nice gesture and I think it’s fantastic to have the flag about Carlisle Town Hall today.”

David Farrell, from the Royal British Legion, said: “It’s very fitting and appropriate for the 40th anniversary, something that is still in the living memories of a lot of people, certainly myself, I can remember what went on.

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“I wasn’t in the forces, but I clearly remember it all.

“It was shocking, we should never forget the sacrifice of the men in the Falklands.”

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