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We will remember them

PUBLISHED: 16:27 13 November 2008 | UPDATED: 12:16 03 July 2010

LEST WE FORGET: The main picture shows the Remembrance Day parade at Great Yarmouth

LEST WE FORGET: The main picture shows the Remembrance Day parade at Great Yarmouth

Alan Thompson

MORE than 1,000 people marked the annual Remembrance Sunday service at St George's Park in Great Yarmouth at the weekend.

For a time, the generation gap was bridged as youth groups and former servicemen came to honour those who had fallen in two world wars and more recent conflicts.

MORE than 1,000 people marked the annual Remembrance Sunday service at St George's Park in Great Yarmouth at the weekend.

For a time, the generation gap was bridged as youth groups and former servicemen came to honour those who had fallen in two world wars and more recent conflicts.

The sun shone and on the stroke of 11am, a bugler heralded the start of the two minute's silence.

Standards carried by military related organisations were lowered, and heads bowed as the gathering at the war memorial hushed.

After reveille was sounded by the bugler, Rector of St Nicholas' Church, Canon Michael Woods said people should remember those who had given their lives in the two world wars and for the more recent conflicts which have claimed the young.

“We must remember on this, the 90th anniversary of the signing of the Armistice in 1918, almost everyone was affected by a loss of a family member. It was inevitably the poor joined up because it provided food, accommodation and clothing.

But the The War to End all Wars was a muddy and bloody affair. It was not like a Hollywood movie where heroes were made.

“Those who fell in this conflict never got up and never came home. We must strive to build a just and peaceful society and help those who have been hurt.”

Among those at the service were the Mayor and Mayoress, Cllr Terry and Mrs Jenny Easter, MP Tony Wright, the deputy lieutenant of Norfolk, the coroner, chairman of the magistrates, and representatives of the police, Royal Navy, Royal Anglian Regiment, RAF Marham, the Army, fire service and churches, councillors and council officers.

Following the service, the Sea Training Corps Band led a parade to the Market Place where a march past and salute was taken.

Gordon Knights, 85, who served in the RAF Royal Observer Corps during the North Africa campaign, and his 83 year old wife Monica attended the service with their family.

Gordon said: “It is essential people do come and pay their respects and tell younger people what it was all about.”

Fire and rescue officer Dave Cook echoed the sentiment. He said: “It is something everyone should understand, particularly with young people today who don't know why we have to remember.”

William and Rosina Hillox revealed they went to the service every year as they felt it was right to pay their respects.

JUST over an hour later, another remembrance service took place at the Far East Prisoner of War (FEPOW) memorial on the seafront. It was a much smaller event, but none the less poignant, and attended by local dignitaries.

The service was led by the Rev Pauline Simpson who said: “I have also come today to honour my own father who was taken prisoner in the Far East. We owe a massive debt to those who died and survived the war and to look forward to a world without war.”

The Rev Simpson is a trustee of Yarmouth FEPOWs and lay chaplain to the Children and Families of FEPOWs organisation.

Veteran of the Far East campaign, Bert Major gave an address.

A SERVICE of Remembrance was also held on Sunday at the National Memorial on Brush Quay, Gorleston organised by former members of the Air Sea Rescue and Marine Craft Unit.

Yarmouth chaplain Peter Paine officiated at the event which was attended by 50 people. He said: “The original rescue and unit disbanded in the 1980s and we are the remaining members who attended the service for former RAF personnel. I think this is a special year, being 90 years since the armistice was signed, and we ought to remember what sacrifices were made at the time.

“Millions of people died in the first world war alone to preserve the freedoms we enjoy today.

“I have to say that although it has been said that younger people do not understand what it was all about, I was greatly warmed by the children at Wroughton Junior School who had had lessons and did know what it was all about.”

THE Poppy Appeal in Great Yarmouth looks like breaking last year's sales.

Robert Powles, chairman of the town's Royal British Legion branch, believed the total figure could exceed the £20,000 raised last year. He expects to know the final total on Monday once the shop in the Victoria Arcade has closed following its final day today.

Mr Powles, 73, who served in the Royal Army Services Corps, said: “It has been fine. It has been very busy. We are hopeful we have exceeded last year's total.”

ABOUT 150 people attended the Remembrance Day service held by Great Yarmouth and Gorleston Lifeboat. Dozens gathered at the Riverside Road station for a service led by the Rev Albert Cadmore. The lifeboats then went out to sea and scattered wreaths and flowers off the south pier in the gaze of dozens of onlookers.


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