We Will Remember Them…

The centre of Eastleigh came to a stop today (Sunday 14th November) as the community gathered together at the town’s ‘Angel of Mons’ war memorial to remember the fallen of two world wars.

Led by his worship, The Mayor of Eastleigh John Caldwell and his chaplain the Reverend Ian Bird, representatives from all political parties, the military, ex serviceman’s associations, emergency services and the cadet forces joined together with ordinary townsfolk for the annual collective act of remembrance and wreath laying ceremony – despite the cold and damp November weather.

Among the dignitaries attending were the Deputy Lieutenant for Hampshire Antony Chambers, the towns former MP, Lord Chidgey of Hamble and the Towns current incumbent MP the Right Honorable Chris Huhne, who as Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change is probably the first cabinet minister to attend the event in Eastleigh.

They were joined by representatives from Eastleigh’s twinned towns.

Kornwestheim in Germany was represented by Bürgermeister Michael Köpple.

The Mayor of Villeneuve St Georges, Slyvie Altman was unable to attend due to civil unrest but sent a deputy instead.

In his address the Mayor reminded the congregation of the sacrifice made by men and women, not only during the world wars, but also in the ongoing conflict in Afghanistan saying:

“They must never be forgotten and we must strive to maintain the freedom and peace that we now enjoy to make our world a better place in which to live.

Each new generation will need to learn of their sacrifice to ensure they did not die in vain”

After the service the parade marched past the Old Town Hall where the Mayor and the Deputy Lieutenant took the salute.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_GePUm4Nu90

The parade was led by the band of Hampshire Constabulary followed by ex servicemen from the Royal British Legion and Polish Ex Combatants Association led by Norman Brown MBE.

The cadet forces were represented by Eastleigh 11 Platoon, Army Cadet Force and 1216 Squadron (Eastleigh) Air Training Corps.

Also marching were members of Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service, the Red Cross and St Johns Ambulance service and Eastleigh’s Scout and Guide organisations.

An unusual but regular feature of Eastleigh’s poppy day commemorations is the participation of members of Paul Capper Funeral Directors who paraded a magnificent pair of horses as a tribute to the animals that also suffered in wartime service.

Photos: © Peter Stewart

If I have failed to mention the participation of your organisation please email me to put it right.

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  5 comments for “We Will Remember Them…

  1. November 15, 2010 at 3:18 am

    You have to take your hat off to Paul Capper, he really makes a huge effort for Eastleigh, not just at this event but all year round.

    A mention must also go to Norman Brown, who again does so much for the face of Eastleigh.

    Both real gentlemen and real Eastleigh folk.

    Shame Huhne did not bring his new woman with him, still I think we had enough brave men and women at the parade who deserve the spotlight far more..

    • mm
      Eastleigh Xpress
      November 15, 2010 at 12:17 pm

      Ouch! That’s a bit harsh on our MP Matthew!!

      Yes, I was disappointed not to see him with his new partner – after all he shared details of his domestic and private life with his constituents in the run up to the election so there is bound to be interest – but to be fair, I can’t ever recall him attending the event with his former wife so it was no surprise either.

      According to the Daily Telegraph he recently introduced his new partner to the Queen at Windsor Castle so he seems to have meant it when he told the News of the World it was a serious relationship.

      I thought it was heartwarming to see our local politicians put aside their differences for one day of the year in order to stand shoulder to shoulder with each other in tribute to those whose ulitmate sacrifice won them the freedom to squabble among themselves for the other 364.

  2. Paul59
    November 15, 2010 at 12:38 pm

    To those who think all young people are yobs take a look at the photos of the army and air cadets.
    There is hope for the future.

  3. peter stewart
    November 15, 2010 at 6:12 pm

    Sorry to throw a bucket of icy water all over you but THEY DIED IN VAIN! We might as well have let Hitler take us over back in 1939. It would have saved all that bloodshed on both sides. As it is, Hitler got his wish to form a European Union by the back door without a single bullet being fired. All he needed was blackmail, bribery and intimidation and British MPs who were/are willing to do ANYTHING to sell out their country. How appalling to think that foreigners are passing laws on us! Even more appalling, we are accepting it by voting in the same old three parties which have aided and abetted it.

    • mm
      Eastleigh Xpress
      November 15, 2010 at 6:43 pm

      Dear oh dearie me! I can’t agree with you here Pete.
      I deplore the transfer of British sovereign powers to the EU as much as you do but to say our troops died in vain or to suggest bloodshed could have been averted by capitulating to Hitler is simply wrong.
      Hitler would have continued to persecute and murder Jews, gypsies, gays, trade unionists, journalists and anyone who dared to speak out against him and his criminal regime be they man woman or child.
      He murdered many thousands of his own German citizens and would not have hesitated to murder any British citizen who refused to kiss the jackboot.
      I’m grateful for the noble sacrifice of our armed services. The best way we can honour them is to ensure this island continues to exercise the right of self determination.

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