D-Day 70: Two services commemorate anniversary

2:00pm Wednesday 4th June 2014

Two services are taking place in Salisbury to commemorate the 70th anniversary of D-Day.

They have been organised by the Royal British Legion and will give the public the chance to honour the veterans who served in the Second World War and other conflicts.

The first takes place on Friday, June 6, at 9.30am in the Guildhall Square. The service is to open to all.

On Sunday, Salisbury will host the Royal British Legion’s Wiltshire county parade and rededication.

Many of the 5,000 members of the branches across the county will gather at Blue Boar Row to form up at 2.20pm.

They will march along Blue Boar Row, Queen Street and New Canal before arriving at St Thomas’s Church for the service of rededication led by county chaplain tje Rev Adrian Pollard assisted by the Rev David Linaker from the church.

After a 45-minute service, the servicemen and their standard bearers will match back to the Guildhall Square where Salisbury mayor Jo Broom will take the salute.

There will also be a trooping of the Royal British Legion, Women’s Section and Union Flags before a reception in the Guildhall at 4pm.

“Each year we try to hold our parade and rededication service in a different Wiltshire town and the last time we held it in Salisbury was in 2003,” said Christopher Prestwich, county secretary of the Royal British Legion.

“We all feel that it is very fitting to hold it in Salisbury this year not only because it is 70 years since the Normandy landings but also in the 100th year since the outbreak of the Great War in which seven or eight battalions from the area served.

“The Royal British Legion has around 5,000 members in 50 local branches in Wiltshire and we hope that many of them will take part. Among them will be those who served on D-Day, who will no doubt be remembering their own experiences during the church service.

“Unlike the Great War, D-Day is still in living memory.

“Also there will be those whose family members followed them into the armed forces and who may be serving away overseas now.

“Services and remembrance give them the chance to recall events that maybe they don’t talk about very often or feel they can only discuss with kindred spirits.

“This will be a very important occasion for our branch.”

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