Mid Devon falls silent as wartime loss remembered
THIRTY poppy wreaths were laid in Tiverton in front of a respectful crowd of hundreds as the town remembered the sacrifices of the armed forces on Sunday, November 11.
Veterans were joined by cadets and local civic leaders to parade from the town hall to St Peter's Church for the annual Remembrance service.
Following the service, crowds joined them in Angel Hill to witness a short ceremony outside the Royal British Legion club's base in the town.
This was followed by the town band playing God Save the Queen, prayers and a short speech of thanks by Brigadier Robin Roderick-Jones.
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He praised the musicians for a "superb rendition" of Last Post and Reveille and thanked Ramsay Hutchison from the Royal British Legion's Tiverton branch for organising the event.
He also thanked the people of Tiverton who he said generously supported the Legion's Poppy Appeal each year, and turned out in large number to watch the parade. "We are very grateful," he told the crowd.
Special permission was also given for four Tivertonian members of the Household Cavalry to attend this year's parade.
Staff Corporal Jamie Broom and Trooper Sam Gasan, from the Blues and Royals, joined Trooper Sam Been and Trooper Josh Kennard-Smith, of the Lifeguards, for the march.
Mayor of Tiverton Councillor Tom Lindus, himself a former soldier, said it had been a great honour to wear the mayoral gown in the parade and propose a toast in the Royal British Legion Club.
Mr Hutchison, who is chairman of the Tiverton branch of the RBL said: "The turn-out from the people of Tiverton seems to be bigger each year, and today it was absolutely fantastic.
Other dignitaries who attended the service included Tiverton and Honiton MP Neil Parish and chair of Mid Devon District Council Brenda Hull.
Some members of Tiverton Town Council chose to walk at the rear of the town council party and to sit with Mid Devon District Council colleagues in the church due to dissatisfaction at the way a recent disciplinary matter was handled by the council.
In Cullompton berets from the Parachute Regiment, the Rifles and the Royal Marines were on show as the town showed its respects.
The Royal British Legion, Cubs, Brownies, Seat Cadets and the Air Training Corps were among organisations to march from St Andrew's Church to the Bullring, where two minutes' silence was observed.
Hundreds of residents attended, with some watching from windows above the street.
Among those to lay wreaths at the town's war memorial was the family of Rifleman Daniel Coffey, killed aged just 21 in Iraq.
In Crediton, Royal British Legion members paraded to the war memorial for a service at 11am.