Today I’m at a meeting down at the Civic Centre in Stoke to help organise this year’s Armed Forces Day event in Stoke-on-Trent (Saturday, June 25). I, personally, am proud to be a part of the process – and, of course, this kind of thing is exactly what any local newspaper worth its salt should be doing. What staggers me is that this small group of senior citizens is having to beg, borrow and steal (so to speak) in order to stage an event to honour our Armed Forces veterans and serving personnel. It may be no different in other cities but, as our lads in the Staffords (3 Mercian) prepare for deployment to Afghanistan, I can’t help but feel embarrassed that we are again scratching around for sponsors at this late stage. Our lads and lasses, past and present, deserve better.