The ninth instalment of the annual Forces March set off from Ilfracombe on Wednesday.

The Forces March 2018. Picture: George SladeThe Forces March 2018. Picture: George Slade

Runners and walkers as teams or individuals were taking part in the recreation of a wartime training march that saw soldiers marching the 137 miles from Ilfracombe to Bulford Camp in Wiltshire.

This year was the 76th anniversary since the original march and it was seen off from Ilfracombe seafront by town crier Roy Goodwin.

Proceeds from the event go to the Veterans’ Charity.

The march was originally created when the Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry were sent to Devon to train during World War Two.

The Forces March is equal to five marathons in five days. Picture: George SladeThe Forces March is equal to five marathons in five days. Picture: George Slade

It was then decided to march the entire regiment back to Bulford and naturally the event became fiercely contested betweens the companies.

Each day of the march is more than a marathon in length. The first days sees participants making their way from Ilfracombe to Exford, with a great many hills enroute.