A full house in London Hellenic Centre’s Great Hall, celebrated earlier tonight in modesty and traditional style the 21st of November, the Hellenic Armed Forces Day, were the Hellenic Defence Attaché Captain (HN) Apostolos Trivlidis and his wife Mrs. Marianna Stamati gave a reception to honour with particular gratitude and admiration, those who have stood out among the pages of Greek history and glory!
Amongst those present were Archbishop Gregorios of Thyateira and Great Britain, the Ambassador of Greece H.E. Konstantinos and Mrs. Bikas, The Cyprus High Commissioner H.E. Eurypedes L. Euryviades, The Greek Commercial Attaché Antonis Katepodis, Defence Attachés from other nations posted in the British capital, Greek Officers serving at the NATO HQ’s in Northwood, members from the British Defence Ministry (MOD), members of the Greek Community in the United Kingdom, members from the Greek Shipping Co-operation Committee, members from the Hellenic Engineers Society of Great Britain as well as officials and personnel from the Greek Embassy and Consulate in London.
There was Greek folklore dancing by the Greek Lycee in London wearing traditional costumes. They performed dances from north east Greece, Thraki in particular, and the Aegean Island and worth mentioning, once again, the exceptional short, but to the point speech* by Captain (HN) Apostolos Trivlides, which you can read at the end of this report.
It was good to see, amongst others, members from the Greek Shipping fraternity in London and Piraeus, Rt. Commodore (HCG) and General Manager of the GSCC Costas Amarantidis and his wife Tenia, Hermes’ Shipbrokers Nicholas Skinitis with his wife Pyghi, president of the Hellenic Lycee in London with their younger son George, Dr. Christos Leontopoulos from ABS Piraeus, Commodore (Rt. HCG) Stathis Kalivas, former Greek Shipping Attaché in the United Kingdom, Captain (MN) Michael Kounoupas, his wife Anne and daughter Chrysoula, Andreas Papadakis from AP Papadakis and his wife, Alex Xenakis form Chandris (UK) Ltd and his wife, Andreas Foustanos from Empirikos Shipbrokers in London, Takis Roubas from King Kollakis Ltd in London, Panagiotis and Marian Voudris, Contessa Maria Antypas – the antiques specialist, Dr. Philip Mavroskoufis, Lt. Commander (HCG) Antonis Doumanis and his wife, Dr. Andreas Koutras, Soprano Katerina Mina, and many others.
Excellent traditional greek canapés and drinks and swirling with the Greek dancers was the name of the game!
*Your Eminence, You H.E. Mr. Ambassador of Greece, High Commissioner of the Republic of Cyprus, distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen.
On behalf of the large family of the Hellenic Armed Forces, I welcome you to the Hellenic Centre. I would like to thank you who have honoured me with your presence to celebrate this significant day. It is a day on which we humbly honour with emotion and respect, those who gloriously wrote the brilliant pages of Greek History on the battlefield; their achievement is a sacred trust and noble heritage for us in this modern age.
The November 21st, which is the official Hellenic Armed Forces Day, is a glorious day of celebration for us, with strong religious and national symbolism with grave and sacred importance. On this day when our Orthodox Church also celebrates the Virgin Mary, our nation honours its Armed Forces and once again emphasizes the inextricable relationship between our religion and our armed forces.
Our Hellenic Armed Forces play a key role in the defense of our national interests which support the positions, policies and decisions of our country. If called upon, the staff of the Armed Forces will always act to defend the integrity of Greece, freedom, and democracy, with high morale and principles, and without prejudice to any difficulties.
Finally, I would like to thank all those who helped with this event. Their assistance was paramount.
Our evening will continue with the London Lyceum of Greek Women who embellish this event every year with their beautiful costumes and dances and of course their graceful presence. They will perform dances from Thraki in North Greece and from the Aegean Islands.