Armed Forces Day celebrated at Exmouth Museum

Armed Forces Day at Exmouth Museum

Armed Forces Day at Exmouth Museum - Credit: Exmouth Museum

There was a large turnout for a celebration of Armed Forces Day at Exmouth Museum on Saturday, June 25. 

The museum joined forces with the Commando Training Centre at Lympstone to stage the event, giving visitors the chance to meet and talk to Royal Marines about their training and their work. 

The museum, which waived admission fees for the day, was decked out with flags and bunting, and there were special exhibits displaying Exmouth’s long association with the armed forces. These included photographs, medals, model soldiers and even a used brass six-inch Royal Naval Shell almost a metre high. 

There was also a display of deactivated armaments including machine guns, grenades and pistols, provided by local militaria collector and author Simon Fogg. 

The Town Crier Roger Bourgein summoned the crowd for the opening ceremony which was performed by the Mayor Steve Gazzard, assisted by Royal Marine veteran and East Devon District Councillor Jeff Trail. 

Mike Menhenitt from the Society of Exmouth Museum said: “The event was so large that the land next to the museum which is owned by South West Water was also used, and they came along with an exhibition for the public to enjoy including some interactive games.  

“Here, the detachment of Royal Marines also set up camp and displayed the full ‘yomping’ kit they carry into battle. Visitors were invited to see if they could lift a fully packed backpack which weighed in at around 50 pounds (23 kilos) and when the ammunition pack and rifle are added in comes to around 80 pounds (36 kilos)!  

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“The marines answered many questions from visitors and received much gratitude for the work they put in keeping us safe and secure. The Royal Marines Charity collectors, comprising veterans and charity staff, were out in force and some were on Exeter Road showing visitors to the museum. 

“The museum would like to thank all those who exhibited, and to the townspeople who came out in force to celebrate such an important day and help raise record sums for the Royal Marines Charity and for museum funds.”