‘They shall not grow old’: Hundreds gather in Wisbech to mark 100 years since the end of the First World War

PUBLISHED: 10:15 12 November 2018 | UPDATED: 10:15 12 November 2018

Wisbech Remembers: Hundreds gather to mark 100 years since the end of the First World War. Picture: Clare Butler.

Wisbech Remembers: Hundreds gather to mark 100 years since the end of the First World War. Picture: Clare Butler.

Archant

Hundreds lined the streets of Wisbech to remember those who laid down their lives in the First World War.

The clouds broke and sun shone down on the War Memorial as the parade and civic party made its way into the town just before 11am.

D-Day landings veteran, 99-year-old Gerry Fleming, who is a resident of Rose Lodge, also made a special appearance.

Revd Canon Matthew Bradbury offered a prayer for all those who have served and lost their lives in conflict before reading the poem ‘Anthem for Doomed Youth’ by Wilfred Owen.

He added: “Neither the burdens of life or the pains of death can separate us from love.”

Wisbech Remembers: Hundreds gather to mark 100 years since the end of the First World War. Pictures: IAN CARTER.Wisbech Remembers: Hundreds gather to mark 100 years since the end of the First World War. Pictures: IAN CARTER.

Crowds fell silent as The Last Post sounded across the town as nine standard bearers lowered their flags.

The Ode to Remembrance was read aloud as wreaths were then laid on the memorial.

Among them were poppy displays from Fenland District Council, Wisbech Lions and Wisbech Eastern European Community.

Two hand knitted poppies with a tag reading ‘Never Forget’ were placed under the names of dozens of men from the town who gave their lives.

Wisbech Remembers: Hundreds gather to mark 100 years since the end of the First World War. Pictures: IAN CARTER.Wisbech Remembers: Hundreds gather to mark 100 years since the end of the First World War. Pictures: IAN CARTER.

Former soldier Leigh White who had fought in Afghanistan attended with his family.

“I am proud to be here today to remember those who sacrificed so much for us,” he said.

“This is really important.”

Mary Downing, 65, and her husband Ken said the minute silence had brought a tear to their eyes.

Wisbech Remembers: Hundreds gather to mark 100 years since the end of the First World War. Pictures: IAN CARTER.Wisbech Remembers: Hundreds gather to mark 100 years since the end of the First World War. Pictures: IAN CARTER.

“It was lovely and I’m happy the sun came out too,” she said.

“We wanted to come and pay our respects because this is the right thing to do and we are thankful to all those men who gave up so much for us to be here today.”

At 11.15am the procession was led to St Peter & St Paul Church for a special service.

Wisbech Remembers: Hundreds gather to mark 100 years since the end of the First World War. Pictures: IAN CARTER.Wisbech Remembers: Hundreds gather to mark 100 years since the end of the First World War. Pictures: IAN CARTER.

Wisbech Remembers: Hundreds gather to mark 100 years since the end of the First World War. Pictures: IAN CARTER.Wisbech Remembers: Hundreds gather to mark 100 years since the end of the First World War. Pictures: IAN CARTER.

Wisbech Remembers: Hundreds gather to mark 100 years since the end of the First World War. Pictures: IAN CARTER.Wisbech Remembers: Hundreds gather to mark 100 years since the end of the First World War. Pictures: IAN CARTER.

Wisbech Remembers: Hundreds gather to mark 100 years since the end of the First World War. Pictures: IAN CARTER.Wisbech Remembers: Hundreds gather to mark 100 years since the end of the First World War. Pictures: IAN CARTER.

Wisbech Remembers: Hundreds gather to mark 100 years since the end of the First World War. Pictures: IAN CARTER.Wisbech Remembers: Hundreds gather to mark 100 years since the end of the First World War. Pictures: IAN CARTER.

Wisbech Remembers: Hundreds gather to mark 100 years since the end of the First World War. Pictures: IAN CARTER.Wisbech Remembers: Hundreds gather to mark 100 years since the end of the First World War. Pictures: IAN CARTER.

Wisbech Remembers: Hundreds gather to mark 100 years since the end of the First World War. Pictures: IAN CARTER.Wisbech Remembers: Hundreds gather to mark 100 years since the end of the First World War. Pictures: IAN CARTER.

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