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The Mayor of Swale's memorial message

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Tuesday 6 November 2018

“On Remembrance Sunday and Armistice Day (11 November) the Borough of Swale stands resolutely alongside the rest of the country to remember all of our war dead. We fall silent and bow our heads as we remember every one of the courageous servicemen and women who have lost their lives in conflict defending our commonwealth, our country and our freedom.

“This year we are commemorating the centenary of the end of World War One and I am honoured to be marking this occasion as the Council once again supports local school ambassadors in making an annual ‘Journey of Commemoration’ for Armistice to Sittingbourne’s twin town, Ypres.

“On Sunday 11 November, accompanied by the Mayoress, Mrs Doreen Koffie-Williams and the Mayoral Cadet, OC Libby Carew of Sittingbourne and Milton Sea Cadets, I will join representatives from nations and regions at the annual Armistice Service in Ypres, Belgium. I will be supported by school ambassadors from eight of the borough’s secondary schools. On behalf of the people of Swale, a floral tribute will be laid at the Menin Gate, preceded by the annual Poppy Parade through the town centre. Following the formal service and Last Post, the civic party and the school ambassadors will visit St George’s Chapel in Ypres before re-joining the coach to travel to the Poelkapelle Cemetery and Langemarck German Cemetery.

“Whilst I will be marking the centenary in Belgium, I am grateful to the Deputy Mayor and my fellow councillors that will be representing me at the various services and acts of remembrance taking place throughout Swale. I hope many families will attend and take a moment to reflect and remember all the servicemen and women who have so selflessly given their lives so that we may live how we do today. I know from past experience that these will be very moving occasions, and all the services will have resonance as every wreath is laid. Though the World Wars may be consigned to history, we still owe a debt that can never be paid back to our armed forces.

“Organised by the Sheerness Branch of The Royal British Legion, a Service and wreath laying to mark the anniversary of the signing of the Armistice in 1918 takes place at 11am on the 11th day of the 11th month, at the Cross of Sacrifice in Sheerness Cemetery, together with the planting of crosses on the War Graves nearby. This year as Armistice Day falls on Remembrance Sunday, the Sheerness Service will take place on Saturday 10 November and the Mayoress and I will attend, laying a wreath and placing the crosses on the war graves.

“I hope that this Remembrance weekend the people of Swale will stand together to show their support for our brave servicemen and women who have defended, and who continue to defend, our country and the freedoms we enjoy.

“I also hope that everyone will take the time to purchase a poppy and wear it with pride, so that we can all display our gratitude and raise money for such a worthwhile charity as the Royal British Legion’s Poppy Appeal.”

Mayor of Swale

Councillor Samuel Koffie-Williams.

 

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