Nostalgia: May forces be with you

THE Capital was once again set to pay tribute to the country’s armed forces today, with scores of veterans, cadets and serving soldiers expected to march through the city’s streets to mark Armed Forces Day.

Troops were expected to set off at 1pm today marching from King’s Stables Road to Princes Street Gardens, and the events will include a fly-past from a Typhoon squadron.

The Lothians has long links with many of the army’s most distinguished regiments – and has always shown its pride in the troops.

Sign up to our History and Heritage newsletter

Sign up to our History and Heritage newsletter

In 1970 it was a sombre occasion that saw members of the Black Watch parade at Mid Calder railway station, as the regiment prepared to leave for Northern Ireland. The deployment saw around 400 officers and men huddled together at the station as they awaited the arrival of a special troop carrier.

The international links have never been forgotten either, and in 1962 officers representing the US Air Force joined Royal Navy and British Army personnel for a parade with wreaths at a special Scottish American War Memorial service in Princes Street. While large crowds turned out to watch the parade, they were dwarfed in comparison with the thousands who took to Princes Street in 1952. They were there to see a parade of the Cameron Highlanders.

All traffic – including the city’s original trams – was stopped to make way for the parade, which marked the herioc platoon’s arrival home after three years of service in north Africa and the Middle East.

A year earlier the crowds had also turned out to salute the Scots Guards – 1st Battalion as they paraded down Princes Street on their way to the Palace of Holyroodhouse to receive new colours from HRGH The Duke of Gloucester, on behalf of the late King.

More recently, in August 1989, the King’s Own Scottish Borderers regiment paraded in Edinburgh to mark their 300th anniversary.