On Tuesday 6th November, students and staff boarded the large coach to make the trip to Beckenham. Everyone was delighted to be met by several parents, grandparents and members of the congregation. They received a warm welcome from Fr Jeremy Blunden to the magnificent Grade II listed church with its 13th Century ‘lychgate’.
Some students wore their cadets’ uniforms and proudly laid the wreath whilst The Last Post played.
Music was played by several students and staff.
“So much of my life working with children and adults has focused on what happens today and in the future. Today, we are spending just a short time remembering the past.
We are here today to honour all those who served and continue to serve our country in times of war and conflict. The number of those killed or injured is in the millions since the First World War began in 1914. Today, we are commemorating 100 years since the end of World War One.
We remember not just soldiers, aircraft personnel and sailors, we also remember the millions of civilians who lost their lives. Civilians have died in munitions or as a result of bullets, bombs or imprisonment.
Many of those who survived conflicts lived for many years with physical and mental scars that affected them for the rest of their lives. Inevitably, there were also long lasting effects on the lives of their families too.
The First World War was called the Great War at the time. Great because of the scale of the war and the belief that it would be the ‘war to end all wars.’ We know now that it wasn’t.
Today we are remembering their sacrifices so that we can be free today. They came from Britain, Europe, Australia, India and America amongst many other nations and individuals who fought for freedom. They came from poor backgrounds, rich backgrounds and all races and religions.
The ‘Last Post’ was originally played in military camps to mark the end of each day and announce that all soldiers should be at rest. It is now part of many memorial services to symbolise that the duty of those who’ve passed is over and they can rest in peace.
The poppy has a long association with Remembrance Day. Once the conflict was over the poppy was one of the only plants to grow on the otherwise barren battlefields.”