At 11.00am on Sunday 12 November, 99 years on from the signing of the Armistice in 1918, more men, women and children than ever gathered at the People of Dover’s war memorial to honour the memory of all the service men and women who gave their lives in action.
The parade of standards, veterans and other organisations marched to the War Memorial in front of Maison Dieu House where two minutes silence was observed with Civic Leaders. The wreath laying was led by the Deputy Lieutenant of Kent on behalf of Her Majesty the Queen and the Town Mayor of Dover, Councillor Neil Rix. The Deputy Mayor of Calais, Dover’s twin town represented his community. Everyone was welcome to lay a wreath including Veteran’s Associations, local organisations and the families of the fallen. The last post was played by a member of the Brigade of Ghurkhas.
The Memorial Service was conducted by the Honorary Chaplain to the Town Mayor, Reverend Dr John Walker who spoke especially of the sacrifices made by those who had lost their lives 100 years ago during the first world war at the Battle of Passchendaele. Reverend Walker then invited his colleague Reverend Sean Sheffield, formerly of the Royal Navy, to share some memories of going into action.
The parade then marched back through the town to the Market Square where the Mayor took the salute at St. Mary’s Church.
Following the service, the Mayor said
The War Memorial stands in the centre of the Town as a daily reminder of the sacrifices made by ordinary men and women that enable us to go about our lives and enjoy freedom today and it is important to come together as a community to pay our respects on Remembrance Sunday. As well as Veterans Associations there were many young people taking part in the parade and for the first time this year we were pleased to welcome members of the Dover Nepalese Community, many of whom are former members of the Brigade of Gurkhas. Our thanks go to all those who contributed to the service especially the White Cliffs Branch of the Royal British Legion who set out the Garden of Remembrance and collected for the Poppy Appeal in all weathers over the last two weeks. We are also grateful to the P&O Choir and Cantium Brass for leading the music and the young people of the newly formed Police Cadets who worked as stewards during the service.