City loses out in bid to be Armed Forces City 2014

DISAPPOINTED Seafront manager David Evans.
DISAPPOINTED Seafront manager David Evans.

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THE man behind Portsmouth’s bid to be named Armed Forces City 2014 said he is disappointed it was not chosen.

Yesterday, the city lost out to Stirling in Scotland in the battle to be given the prestigious title for next year.

The city would have been the international focal point for the 350th anniversary of the Royal Marines, the centenary of the outbreak of the First World War and the 70th anniversary of D-Day.

Seafront manager David Evans said: ‘I’m very disappointed.

‘We had everything going for us.

‘We are home to the Royal Navy and the D-Day veterans.

‘It really is disappointing not to be chosen.

‘I can’t understand why it’s happened.

‘We had the backing of so many people.

‘I’m sure the veterans will be disappointed as well.

‘But this will not stop us from carrying on with our plans to commemorate the 70th anniversary of D-Day.’

Portsmouth City Council leader Councillor Gerald Vernon-Jackson believes the government picked Stirling in a political move, as Scotland is due to have its independence referendum next year.

He said: ‘It is a purely political decision. I’m sorry politics has taken the title away from us.

‘But we will still be staging our commemoration events, even without government backing.’