THE centre of Odiham was more reminiscent of a racetrack on Saturday as the area celebrated Armed Forces Day.

Nearly 1,000 people lined the streets of Odiham for a combined Armed Forces Day celebration and box cart race.

On the day, members of RAF Odiham paraded in front of station commander group captain Lee Turner.

Both captain Turner and North East Hampshire MP Ranil Jayawardena addressed the crowd, praising the efforts of all of the UK’s armed forces.

Following the parade, the crowd was then treated to the themed box cart race, with teams from every branch of the armed forces, including RAF Odiham, making a showing, along with several civilian teams.

The teams careened down High Street to get the fastest time, with Westfield Equestrian taking home the main trophy for the quickest time, with its Horsa creation.

Event organiser Jon Hale said: “A core objective of our event is to show the personnel and families at RAF Odiham just how much our parish value our armed forces and being home to the UK’s Chinook force.

“Our event volunteers and the nine teams made a staggering effort to achieve this, with an amazing array of superb carts competing for best design, fastest scramble start, fastest run and best team.

“We were also honoured to have both the deputy lieutenant for Hampshire Air Vice Marshal Paul Luker, CB, OBE, AFC, DL and Group Captain Turner as guest judges.”

The day did not end there, with InOdiham’s Bands in the Bury giving the rest of the day a distinctly musical feel as local talent got a chance to show their skills.

Becci Friend, chairman of InOdiham added: “Bands in the Bury was a spectacular success this year helped by the stunning weather, but made possible by our superb volunteers.

“This free event not only promotes our village but also brings the community together, which is great to see.”