Falklands 40: Veterans gather in Portsmouth to remember fallen comrades

Watch Andrew Pate's report for ITV News

The 40th anniversary of the Falklands conflict has been marked in Portsmouth in the largest event of its kind in the UK today.

Veterans and those currently serving, paraded through the city before a special service.

Guests from across the country and the Falklands paid their respects, as a new memorial plaque was unveiled, commemorating the 255 servicemen and three Islanders who lost their lives.

They were joined by Roger Spink, Member of Legislative Assembly of the Falkland Islands, who said travelling to Britain was the least he could do to pay his own respects.

"They came 8000 miles for us forty years ago," he said, "so it's important to come and recognise the extraordinary feat that they achieved.

"They are friends of everybody in the Falklands. We look on them as our heroes.

"Some made the ultimate sacrifice and we feel an indebtedness to these people."

A plaque was installed commemorating all those who lost their lives in the conflict
Wreaths were laid by the Square Tower

Leader of the council Gerald Vernon-Jackson said it was only right to recognise the strong bond between the city and the Falklands.

"We have a really strong links," he said.

"We fly the flag here all the time. We have a memorial here - that we're extending today. So it's very close link.

"We wanted to make it formal that Portsmouth and the Falkland Islands are twinned and we signed the documentation today."

Falklands veterans, the Naval Association, the Royal Marines Association Portsmouth and the Association of Wrens and Women of the Royal Naval Services join a select list of other notable individuals and groups who have been granted the Freedom of the City - including The Corps of Royal Marines and Portsmouth Football Club.