Hundreds lined the streets of Bury St Edmunds to show their support for the armed forces this morning.
Celebrations started with a homecoming parade for 15 Squadron RAF Regiment based at Honington.
Led by the band of Three Royal Anglian Regiment the squadron was accompanied by cheers as they marched from the Abbey Gate through the town before returning to Angel Hill.
On Angel Hill Air Chief Marshal Sir Richard Johns presented medals to those who had returned from their first tour in Afghanistan.
Squadron Leader Max Kroyer, said: “It’s quite moving just the turn out cheering you on makes me feel quite proud and it’s quite humbling we did not predict such a large turn out.
“It boosts morale certainly boosted mine we do not do it because we want recognition but it’s nice to get that recognition.”
15 Squadron Raf Regiment Honington returned from a six-month deployment in Helmand, in May, where they provided protection for Camp Bastion.
Squadron Leader Kroyer said: “The lads have done an incredible job in exceptionally difficult circumstances not just being away from family. It was an eventful tour we did take casualties. To bring all the guys back all be it some injured is fantastic - it’s something at the back of your mind the blokes did not choose you to be their boss you have that duty to look after them. I’m honoured and privileged to have served with them.”
Lance Corpral Sam Brown said: “It makes you feel a little bit more proud like you are doing something. Knowing everyone back home is behind you.”
During the afternoon the Abbey Gardens will host entertainment including swing dancing and the Honington Military Wives Choir.