Colin Grainger

Armistice Day: Moving ceremony unites the community


Generations came together for a moving event it was an honour to be part of at the Central Park Cenotaph, East Ham, this morning.

It marked the 96th Anniversary of the Armistice and also 100 years since the start of the First World War.

The event was held at the park in High Street South, East Ham, and it grows in popularity each year.

It was staged by the Newham Catholic Deanery Schools, the Royal British Legion and Newham Council.

We were all left in praise of the pupils from St Joachim’s. St Bonaventure’s, St Francis’, St Michael’s, St Winefride’s, St Angela’s, St Edward’s, St Helen’s and St Antony’s schools who all played their parts in 45-minute commemoration.

The event started with the Last Post, and this was followed by two minutes silence, Reveille, and the Exhortation for the Fallen and the Kohima Prayer.

Wreaths were laid by Newham Mayor Sir Robin Wales, MP Stephen Timms and senior council staff and other members of the community, and pupils from all the schools.

The gospel reading and touching poems were also read and those gathered, around 600, then sang Abide With Me and God Save The Queen.


The way this event has grown, along with the Remembrance Sundays Services in Newham, is incredible given the smaller numbers of individuals that were present just 15-20 years ago.

It says much about the strength of the community in Newham, and having been privileged to spend at day assembling and planting the ceramic poppies at the Tower of London some weeks ago, it does your heart good to see that the sacrifices made by others so that we can enjoy the freedoms of today will never by forgotten.

The installation has captured the imagination of millions worldwide .

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Following the conclusion of the service, the Royal British Legion then also provided talks for the children about its work and history and also the stories behind some of the local names on the remembrance memorial on the Cenotaph in East Ham.

It was an appropriate way to honour those who lost their lives and a fitting way to unite generations in remembrance.



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Pictures: Colin Grainger

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This article was written on 11 Nov 2014, and is filed under community, East London, Newham, Newham Council, Remembrance, Royal British Legion.

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