Thursday, November 11, 2010

92nd Anniversary of the Armistice: Central Park Cenotaph

This morning I attended a very moving Armistice service at the Central Park Cenotaph in East Ham. 

What I thought was really special was the involvement of local schools in marking the occasion.  The Newham Catholic Deanary Schools had done themselves proud with a marvellous turnout of young people.

This was of course a Royal British Legion event led by a Priest.  The Mayor, Sir Robin Wales, gave welcoming and closing comments.  However, the ceremony itself was largely carried by our next generations who gave solemn but beautiful readings and who walked respectfully to the Cenotaph and laid down wreaths, then stepped backwards, stopped, and bowed towards it.  Some of the younger ones didn't quite get all of the sequences 100% right but the seriousness they all took the occasion was inspiring. 

Afterwards a member of the British Legion gave a talk to the children about the first world war, about why Poppies are used to remember and stories about some of the people whose names are recorded on the Cenotaph.  (Picture right - double click to bring up details)

Refreshments were later served at Newham Town Hall which also had a special history exhibition. 

Where I found out that the reason why there is a small post war housing development across the road from my home is that the German Bombers flattened that area with incendiary bombs on 16 September 1940. 

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