It’s an amazing display of strength and teamwork. Armed Forces Day 2012 will see the first ever Brickwoods Field Gun Race held on Plymouth Hoe.
HMNB Devonport and HMS Raleigh will pit their teams against each other for the honour of lifting the Tamar Challenge Cup on Saturday 30 June.
The fast and furious race is the ultimate test of strength, courage, discipline and teamwork. The display will begin with the Devonport and Raleigh teams laying out their equipment and doing a slow speed, demonstration run with commentary, then both teams will set up for the starting cannon. The local rivals will charge down the arena with the guns and carriages which weigh around a ton each.
Councillor Peter Smith, Deputy Leader of Plymouth City Council said: ”This is going to be an incredibly exciting spectacle with two local teams going head to head in the inaugural competition. The arena is going to be packed full of fantastic entertainment and I’m sure the crowds will really get behind the teams in this race and cheer them on.”
Warrant Officer 2 SM ‘Spike’ Way added: “Field gun is the ultimate team event, wholly enshrining the culture and ethos upon which the Royal Navy stands. With courage, moral strength and total selfless commitment for the whole team, everyone, no matter what their role within the crew, has an equally important part to play to ensure the team’s success.”
The race will be held in the main arena on the Hoe at 12.30pm. It is the culmination of months of training where each crew member will have pushed the boundaries of physical pain and mental anguish to improve their skills for the benefit of the team.
The Field Gun Run dates back to 1907 when the first competition was held at the Royal Tournament. It is a tradition with its origins in the Boer War when guns were hauled from HMS Powerful to Ladysmith by the Naval Brigade to defend the town. Teams still compete for the Brickwoods Trophy in an annual competition held in Portsmouth.
The competition is part of a full day’s entertainment in the arena and on the stages. Plymouth City Council is working with the armed forces and its partners to organise Armed Forces Day. It promises to be a spectacular day with a parade and air displays as well as the Royal Navy, Army, Royal Air Force and Veterans’ Villages with stands and displays.
More information on the programme of events for Armed Forces Day can be viewed on the Plymouth City Council website.
Source: Plymouth City Council