Aylesbury Vale marks Remembrance Sunday and the end of the First World War

This year's Aylesbury remembrance service
This year's Aylesbury remembrance service

Events took place across Aylesbury Vale yesterday (Sunday) to remember those who gave their lives for their country at war.

The annual Remembrance Day service and parade, which this year assumed added significance as it was the 100th anniversary of the end of the First World War, took place in Market Square.

The parade started from the arches off Market Square and processed to the war memorial for a wreath-laying ceremony.

The morning remembrance service was led by Reverend Doug Zimmerman, and featured the two minutes silence, the playing of The Last Post, and prayers, hymns and the national anthem.

The choir of St Mary’s Church and Ellesborough Silver Band provided musical accompaniment and it is estimated that 2,000 people attended the service at Market Square.

Proceedings started with the playing of The Battle's O'er at 6am and despite driving rain and the early start an estimated 200 people observed this act.

Dignitaries in attendance included the Lord Lieutenant of Bucks Sir Henry Aubrey-Fletcher, councillor Sue Renshell, the chairman of Aylesbury Vale District Council, mayor councillor Mark Willis, RAF Halton Group Captain Katherine Wilson and representatives from local organisations.

Among those who took part in the march were the Royal British Legion riders, RAF Halton pipes and drums, 710 Operational Hygiene Squadron, RAF Colour Squadron, Royal British Legion and ex-service associations, sea and marine cadets, police cadets, Scouts, Guides and the boys’ and girls brigade.

Aylesbury mayor Mark Willis reflected on the day writing on Twitter on Monday: "After yesterday's parade and last night's church service and beacon, I'm still trying to process the day.

"It was a wonderful parade with young and old side by side.

"Last night's music in the church was outstanding, I can't remember the last time music hit me like that."

Speaking afterwards, the Lord Lieutenant of Bucks Sir Henry Aubrey-Fletcher said: “It has been wonderful to see so many people of all ages come out to show their appreciation for the men and women of the World War One generation and the sacrifices they made."

An afternoon event took place at the Gateway in Aylesbury entitled 'Thank you to the World War One generation' featuring live music from groups including the Halton Wives Choir, the Rockabellas and the Bucks Band of the Royal British Legion.

There were exhibitions and displays on a World War theme plus ration-style lunches and afternoon teas - an estimated 600 people attended this celebratory event.

Meanwhile, RAF Halton personnel supported numerous remembrance parades and services, with personnel attending events at neighbouring towns and villages in Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire.

Station Commander Group Captain Katherine Wilson attended the Aylesbury service where she laid a wreath on behalf of the station.

Wing Commander Ian Hough went to both the Halton village service in the morning and the Wendover parade in the afternoon.

Speaking about his experience Wing Commander Hough said: "I had the privilege to represent RAF Halton at both the parish of Halton and Wendover Remembrance Sunday parades.”

“It was with great pleasure and pride that I was able to represent RAF Halton on this auspicious occasion where we were able to remember both service and civilian personnel that have given their lives in the defence of this country.

"Marking the 100th anniversary of the armistice made the occasion even more poignant.

"I had the opportunity to join Halton Air Cadet Unit as they spent some time laying remembrance crosses on the graves of servicemen within the Halton Church graveyard.

"The unit had spent time researching each individual, their service history and then a cadet of the same age laid an individual remembrance cross.

"A weekend of reflection, thanking our predecessors for their ultimate sacrifice and for encouraging the next generation to continue remembering fallen service persons from all countries and across all conflicts.”

Remembrance services and events took place in communities right across Aylesbury Vale, and information about these can be found in the neighbourhood news section of the Bucks Herald newspaper this week and the following week.