Hundreds of people turned out to pay their respects to the men and women of the Armed Forces, past, present and future, at Wolverhampton’s Observance of Remembrance yesterday (Sunday 8 November, 2015).
The annual ceremony began with a parade led by the Band of the West Midlands Fire Service through the city centre featuring detachments from ex-Service, Regular, Reserve, Cadet Units and representatives of other local uniformed organisations, before dignitaries gathered at the Cenotaph in St Peter’s Square for the traditional Drumhead service.
Some 425 joined the parade, with hundreds of members of the public also showing their support in the large crowd.
Wolverhampton’s Mayor Councillor Ian Brookfield said:
“The annual Observance of Remembrance is an opportunity for Wolverhampton to pay tribute to the men and women of our Armed Forces, past, present and future, and the Mayoress and I were honoured to be a part of it. This year’s ceremony was particularly poignant, as it marked 70 years since the end of the Second World War. The atmosphere was one of dignity in what was a very moving occasion. Many thanks to all involved, and to everyone who attended, making it the biggest turnout in many a year. I’d like to remind everyone that they can also pay their respects at the Royal British Legion City of Wolverhampton Central Branch’s annual service of remembrance at the Cenotaph this Wednesday (11 November, 2015), which begins at 10.45am and will be preceded by a short parade.”
Among those taking part in yesterday’s parade were representatives from 1047 City of Wolverhampton Air Training Corps, 210 (Staffordshire) Battery 103 Regiment Royal Artillery, 210 Battery Association, 4th Battalion the Mercian Regiment, Boy’s Brigade Wolverhampton Battalion, British and Caribbean Veterans Association, British Korean Veterans Association Wolverhampton Branch, British Red Cross Society, Fellowship of the Services, 445 (Wulfruna) Mess and the Hungarian Cultural Association of Wolverhampton.
They were joined by the National Association of Retired Police Officers Wolverhampton Branch, National Service Royal Armoured Corps, 4/7 Royal Dragoon Guards, RAF Cosford, RAF National Service Association, Cosford Branch, RAOB GLE, Wolverhampton PG Lodge, RNLI and the Royal British Legion City of Wolverhampton Central Branch.
Also taking part were the Royal Naval Association, St John Ambulance, Stafford’s Regimental Association, Wolverhampton Branch, Staffordshire and West Midlands ACF B Company, Territorial Army Veteran, The Mercian Regiment, War Widows Association of Great Britain and Wolverhampton Sea Cadets.
Meanwhile, the Mayor also took part in a service to commemorate Dutch soldiers from the Princess Irene Brigade at the annual Dutch War Graves Service of Remembrance at the Jeffcock Road Cemetery, Pennfields, on Saturday.
The Princess Irene Brigade was stationed at Wrottesley Park during the Second World War and took part in the D-Day landings which began the liberation of Western Europe. They were also the first Allied troops to enter The Hague. Many members of the Brigade are buried at the Jeffcock Road Cemetery.