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Jun 12 2021

the United Kingdom's National Day

The U.K. does not have a national day, though sometimes it uses the official birthday of the Queen. However, the Queen celebrates two birthdays each year: her actual birthday on 21 April and her official birthday on (usually) the second Saturday in June.

Meet Staff Sergeant Ross Fernie. He works as a Imagery and video specialist and production team lead at the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE) in Mons, Belgium. We asked him a few questions on the national day, but also on his nation.

Read his answers below.


1. What do you miss most about home?

Definitely family, because of the COVID crisis It has been really difficult to get back home. My little girl has been growing up really fast and knowing family is missing her growing up is the hardest part of being away.

2. What have you found rewarding about working in such a multinational environment as SHAPE?

Working in SHAPE has been a real eye opener. As a British Army Photographer, we need to have the ability and confidence to speak to people from all ranks and backgrounds, in SHAPE you still need those abilities, but you need to add multiple cultures, languages and personalities into that mix. It is massively rewarding and a place I would recommend anyone who has the opportunity to work in should definitely take it.

3. What is something unique about the United Kingdom that others might not know?

Llanfairpwllgwyngyll-gogerychwyrndrobwlllllandysiliogogogoch. You only saw a meaningless string of letters, didn't you? This happens to be the name of a town in Wales. It is the longest name of any city in the world.

4. During normal non COVID times how would you usually celebrate this national day?

If I'm not working, I would spend the time with my family watching Trooping of the Colour on the TV. Trooping the Colour is a ceremony performed by regiments of the British and Commonwealth armies. It has been a tradition of British infantry regiments since the 17th century and is fantastic to watch.

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