Thursday, 27th November 2014

Lest we forget…

Residents lined the streets of north Shropshire in their hundreds to pay tribute to the war heroes who have fought and died for their country.

This year’s Remembrance Sunday marked the 92nd anniversary of the end of hostilities in World War One. The guns fell silent on November 11 at 11am in 1918.

sd3649566nch13mem1-remembr.jpgMayor of Whitchurch Alan Chesters, front right.

Parades of former and current military men and women, civic dignitaries and youth organisations took place last Sunday and people stood in silence at cenotaphs and other war memorials.

In Whitchurch a sound amplifier system was installed for the first time to ensure crowds gathering outside the war memorial area could hear the ceremony.

John Roberts, Whitchurch branch chairman of the Royal British Legion, told the Chronicle that the sound system had been the brainchild of Whitchurch Town Council.

Moving occasion

He said: “We were fortunate it didn’t rain at all and there was a large crowd gathered for a very moving occasion. There were representatives from RAF Shawbury present and all our local organisations were very well represented.”

A march was led by Whitchurch Band to St Alkmund’s Church, where a service was held after a two-minute silence and the laying of wreaths.

In Ellesmere, meanwhile, there was a parade along Talbot Street to St Mary’s Church, where wreaths were laid and the roll of honour called out.

Richard Speer, Ellesmere branch chairman of the Royal British Legion, said recent collections in aid of the Poppy Appeal – which celebrates its 90th anniversary next year – raised more than £600.

sd3649588nch13wemrem-reme.jpgWem mayor Mandy Meakin lays her wreath.

Ellesmere army cadets and Market Drayton air cadets helped out with the collections and told Mr Speer that there had been quite a lot of interest from young people.

Mr Speer added: “I have been out collecting the collection boxes in Ellesmere and I can just about lift some of them, so I think we’re in for a bumper year.”

And in Wem, a parade proceeded along High Street to the war memorial at St Peter and St Paul’s Church, where the mayoral party, wreath layers and standard bearers assembled for the act of remembrance.

Many agreed that the crowds were bigger than ever and said the current troubles in Afghanistan had brought people out.

by Charlotte Hester