Bombed during World War II, St George’s Garrison Church survives as an evocative ruin with recently conserved mosaics, and a modern canopy roof, for all to enjoy.

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Armed Forces Day

Armed Forces Day - an action-packed event returned to Barrack Field

Armed Forces Day took place on 29th June on Barrack Field, opposite the Barracks and just across Grand Depot Road from the Garrison Church. It was a great success. The day began with a procession led by the Band of the Welsh Guards from Woolwich Town Centre to Barrack Field. There they were joined by a contingent of veterans and speeches of welcome from Matt Pennycook our past (and soon to be current) MP, by Jit Ranabhat, the Mayor and by Major General Marshall a Senior Gunner officer.

The military village, organised by the Army, was very popular. Regiments such as the Guards and the Paras had stalls, there was an assault/obstacle course, the Kings Troop brought some of their horses, kids were given the chance of sitting in the cab of a giant tank transporter, and handling firearms (under strict soldierly control!). In addition there were fire engines, ambulances and refuse vehicles to be investigated.

A procession in the Arena involved about 50 classic cars and ambulances, and music from a great stage with impressive amplification took place from 12.30pm to 10.00pm. Our good friends the RAF Cadets Band under Mark Bird put on a brilliant performance. There was Jazz from Trinity College of Music, a Nepali band and dancers. Company 3 performed with their customary effervescent style and the evening was rounded off by the Jolly Good Timers and 16-piece Ben Beddoes Big Band.

There was a fairground, a craft market, a marquee in which local charities, (including the Woolwich Garrison Church Trust) and other organisations had stalls, and a large number of food stalls with cooking from different countries, as well as bars offering everything from Pimms and mocktails to craft beer.

Charlton Athletic organised a kids' football competition on 4 grounds near the cricket pavilion, involving 16 teams.
The weather played its part. A beautiful summer's day. Although AFD was not a specific Garrison Church initiative it was widely known and recognised in speeches that our efforts had been largely responsible for the event taking place. About 7,500 people attended during the day and its success will undoubtedly help in the long-running saga of persuading the MOD to maintain Woolwich Barracks as an Army base.

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St George's Garrison Church in Woolwich, with its modern canopy roof and stunning mosaics, is both an evocative ruin and a contemporary space. Designed by Thomas H Wyatt in an Italian-Romanesque style, the Church was built between 1862-63 to serve the Royal Artillery in Woolwich. Today it is run by a local group, the Woolwich Garrison Church Trust who are committed to making it available for all to visit and enjoy. Directly opposite the Barracks in Woolwich, South East London, come and enjoy its beauty and peaceful garden.

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