Category: what's on

Plymouth Armed Forces Day, in association with Babcock, is back on Saturday 29 June with a day packed full of family fun and an opportunity for everyone to show their support to the military community!

Jump to: When and where is it | What to see and do | Accessibility information | Event Map | Food and drink | How to get there | Road closures 

Where and when is it?

All the action takes place on Plymouth Hoe on Saturday 29 June 2024.

The event opens at 10am until 5.15pm, with the free evening concert starting at 5.45pm until 10.30pm.


What to see and do

Meet the military and emergency services

Explore the military villages, where you can chat to members of all the Armed Forces and learn more about the vehicles and equipment they use or get careers advice. Sample the culinary delights of the Royal Navy caterers or visit the Dive Tank. Climb on-board the Royal Marines’ Raiding Craft, try the RAF Cadets desk simulators, or give the Army’s climbing wall a try!

Look out for the Emergency Services personnel who will have an exciting range of equipment to explore. Attending is the Fire Service, Police, Dartmoor Search and Rescue Team Plymouth, Coastguard Search and Rescue and the RNLI.


Be amazed at the arena

There’s a packed arena programme to enjoy, with demonstrations, parades and live music. Watch the Parade of Standards led by the City of Plymouth Pipe Band at 11am, all veterans are invited to join.

For some thrilling action, watch the Royal Marines Unarmed Combat Display at 3pm, and Team Endeavour Punishers Wheelchair rugby match at 3.20pm.

Don’t miss the exciting Junior Field Gun tournaments taking place throughout the day from their dedicated arena at the Elliot Street end of Plymouth Hoe.

Field Gun Display on The Hoe



Watch the Corps of Drums of the RMVCC Band Plymouth at 10.15am and 1.15pm. And the Torpoint Sea Cadets at 12.30pm.


Visit the Veterans’ Village

The Veterans' Village is once again sponsored by the Royal British Legion, and will host over 100 local charities and organisations, each offering information and advice to the serving members of our Armed Forces, veterans, and their families.

If you’re interested in cars, you will find both the old and new on display - with vintage military vehicles up on the Hoe Promenade, to the INEOS Grenadier and Marshall Audi who will have a selection of vehicles on display.


Babcock International’s dynamic display

Get hands-on with the Babcock team through a variety of Science Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) activities for all ages to enjoy. Visitors can also find out about the wide range of career opportunities available, see technology in action and much more!


Entertainment for young children

Visit the Foster for Plymouth marquee, located by the Royal Marines village, for a wide selection of free activities and entertainment for young children, including: free glitter tattoos from 1pm, colouring station, Connect 4 and Lego activities, and between 10am and 12pm they will have three Disney characters joining them. 


Air demonstration

From 4pm look to the skies for the air demonstration, including the Swordfish W5856 the oldest surviving airworthy Fairey Swordfish in the world. Wasp XT420 painted as 422 of HMS Aurora Flight, built in 1964. Followed by an adrenaline-packed Formation Pair performance by the AeroSuperBatics Wingwalkers.


Live music lineup

5.45pm to 6.30pm - The Feel Good Factory. Playing a selection of crazy mashups, upbeat swing, punchy ska and even the odd stomping country tune.

6.50pm to 7.50pm - Jessica and the Rabbits. Seven piece line up, performing sounds of true rhythm and blues

8.10pm to 9.10pm  - Rockafella. Energetic rock covers band, playing modern classics and forgotten gems.

9.30pm to 10.30pm -The Big Strut. This hip, no-nonsense six-piece band will be performing a lively setlist of massive, modern tunes and a few old favourites too.


Prepare for the sun!

Don’t forget to bring your sun cream, sun hats and stay hydrated throughout Armed Forces Day. There will be a refillable water station on site, plus refreshment stalls available, selling a wide selection of food and drink, including a reusable Plymouth cup.


Event Map 

Find out where everything is taking place at this year's Armed Forces Day with the official event map.

View the map.


Accessibility information

There is a designated viewing area for people with access needs, to view the main stage and arena.

Accessible toilets can be found at both ends of the Hoe. The Hoe’s permanent public toilets also include six unisex toilets, with one additional accessible toilet and a large, accessible changing room.

There will be no disabled parking on Plymouth Hoe but Ballard House car park on West Hoe Road is available for blue badge holders, plus the use of on-street parking.

The 25B bus supplied by Plymouth Citybus will then operate a shuttle service between Ballard House, Royal Parade (outside the Theatre Royal) and Hoe Road (near the Hoe ramp) at 30-minute intervals, starting at 8.35am with the last departure from Hoe Road at 6.45pm. This costs £2 per single journey, with free travel for blue badge holders.

If you need to retreat to a calmer space at any point during the weekend, we’d recommend visiting the Sensory Garden (near the Osbourne Place entrance to the Hoe), where you can soak up the atmosphere away from the hustle and bustle.


Food and drink

You'll find a great range of food and drink available to purchase from the C&G Catering stalls across The Hoe, with everything from fish and chips, Cornish pasties, burgers and hot dogs to noodles on offer.

There will be a licensed bar open too and for the second year, there will be a reusable cup scheme. Purchased a branded cup for £1 extra on your first purchase and use it thorughout the day. 

Food and Drink stalls at Armed Forces Day


How to get to there

If you’re coming along to Armed Forces Day, why not look at alternative transport, rather than bringing your car. Connect Plymouth have some great ways to help reduce Plymouth’s carbon footprint, including the brilliant Beryl Bikes, which are also doing free taster sessions in the main arena during the day.

If you do need to travel by car then there are lots of car parks within walking distance, the closest being the Theatre Royal Car Park. Find somewhere to park on the Plymouth City Council website.

If you’re travelling by bus, then services from all across the city will stop at Royal Parade which is then just a ten-minute walk to Plymouth Hoe.

Plymouth Citybus are offering free bus travel on Armed Forces Day to military personnel, veterans and cadets with ID.

All visitors arriving by car are encouraged to use Plymouth’s Park and Ride services to Royal Parade which is approximately a 10 minute walk up to the Hoe.

If you were planning to travel by train, please check the GWR website for details.


Road Closures:

Flag Raising 24 June

  • Armada Way between Princess Street and the Guildhall public car park from 8.30am to 11.30am

Armed Forces Day 29 June

  • Hoe Road from the Mound at the Citadel to the junction of Madeira Road from 7am to 10.30pm, with suspension of parking from 7am to 10.30pm.
  • Citadel Road from the junction of Lockyer Street to the junction of Sussex Street from 5pm to 7pm with suspension of Parking 7am to 7pm.
  • Suspension of parking on Lockyer Street entrance to the Hoe to the junction with The Esplanades from 7am to 7pm
  • Mount Batten Pier will be closed due to health and safety reasons from 3:30pm until 5pm on Saturday 29 June.

Free Armed Forces Day programmes will be available on the day, or can be collected from the Tourist Information Centre on the Barbican, or click here.

For further themed Plymouth inspiration, exclusive offers and things to do in the city, sign up to our free Visit Plymouth e-newsletter.

In partnership with GWR, Destination Plymouth’s lead travel partner 



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