People in their thousands turned out for Remembrance Sunday on a cold but sunny November’s morning in Colchester led by The Mayor and Mayoress of Colchester, Cllrs. Gerald and Beverly Oxford.
Members of the council, civic dignitaries, The Royal British Legion and representation from the Colchester Garrison gathered at the War Memorial outside the entrance to Colchester Castle at 10:40am.
At 11:00am, a two minute silence was signalled by the firing of a 105mm Light Gun by soldiers from 16 Air Assault Brigade.
The two minute silence represents the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month in 1918, when the guns of Europe finally fell silent.
The moving service at the war memorial was followed by a march past along the High Street by soldiers, veterans and youth organisations, with the Mayor, CCllr. Gerald Oxford taking the salute at the Town Hall.
Remembrance Sunday is held in the UK as a day to “commemorate the contribution of British and Commonwealth military and civilian servicemen and women in the two World Wars.”Traditionally held on the second Sunday in November, the Sunday nearest to the 11th of November, Remembrance Sunday commemorates the 1918 anniversary of the end of hostilities in the First World War at 11 a.m.
Vic Flores, newly elected Conservative councillor for Shrub End, himself an ex-RAF photographer was also in attendance: “Being an ex-serviceman I have attended many Remembrance Sunday services, but this is my first as a councillor in my home town of Colchester and I’m very proud to be here, to remember all those who made the ultimate sacrifice.”
Colchester councillor for Castle ward, Darius Laws attended the moving ceremony: “The amount of people attending the Sunday commemorations grows year on year. We must never forget the ultimate sacrifice so many made for our freedom today.”
The British Legion is the national custodian of Remembrance, safeguarding the memory of those who fought and died in conflict and more.
The Legion reminds people: “by donating and wearing a poppy, you aren’t just remembering the fallen: you’re supporting a new generation of veterans and Service personnel that need support.”