Come and salute our heroes

THE stage is set for an exciting weekend extravaganza in honour of our Armed Forces.

The Salute for Heroes is happening at Glemham Hall, just off the A12 north of Woodbridge, today and tomorrow.

Organisers are promising fun for all the family and are hoping for a bumper turnout to raise as much money as possible for Armed Forces charity Help for Heroes.

The fundraising kicked off in tremendous style last night with an auction that raised �27,500.

Among those items that went under the hammer were signed copies of screenplays by director Richard Curtis which went for �375, a week long holiday at the Ore Valley Holiday Cottage for �600 and a Fred Olsen Cruise for �2,500.

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Other lots included lunch or dinner for two by Michel Roux Junior, which sold for �500 and a variety of original water colours and oil paintings.

The fun continues with a fantastic programme of events this weekend including stunt horses, motorcycle display teams, dog agility, vintage aircraft displays, freefall parachute displays, brass and pipe bands, classic cars and motorbikes, armoured vehicles and a grand finale that will include all 1,000 participants, a flypast and a 21-gun salute from a large vintage cannon. There will also be a variety of battle re-enactments from Classical Greek and Roman through to the English Civil War and post-Second World War.

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On Sunday there will be a drum head service performed by the Royal British Legion.

Roger Willison-Gray, chairman of the event’s organising committee and Suffolk co-ordinator for Help for Heroes, said: “There is something for everyone. It promises to be a wonderful two days and I would encourage everyone to come down and have a look.

“Our aim is to try and raise �250,000 for Help for Heroes. We are currently building four personnel recovery centres around the country so people can be rehabilitated in their own community – one of which will be in Colchester. We hope the money we raise will contribute to that.

“With that in mind the whole show has an East Anglian theme – the displays and exhibitions have been chosen to reflect the history of the region.”

Jeremy Rugge-Price, Help for Heroes Suffolk co-ordinator and military co-ordinator for the weekend’s event, has visited the Defence Medical Rehabilitation Unit at Headly Court in Surrey which is supported by the charity.

“It’s not necessarily all about physical injury,” he said. “There are people with all sorts of wounds, mental and otherwise.

“It is essential these boys are given as much help as possible. Every penny we raise through the fund goes directly to that.”

The event runs from 11am to 5pm both days with gates opening at 10am and car parking from 8am.

Admission is �10 for adults, �5 for children or �20 per car, �40 per minibus and �200 per coach.

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