TWO members of the Royal British Legion Lyme Regis branch are currently visiting Ypres in Belgium to take part in commemorations for the 100th anniversary of the end of the First World War.
Legion member Daniel Buckley, who completed several tours of Afghanistan in bomb disposal, and standard bearer Jon Hunt, who served in the Devon and Dorsets, left Lyme Regis on Sunday morning to take part in the Great Pilgrimage.
A decade after the end of WW1, the British Legion, as it was then known, organised for veterans and war widows to visit the battlefields of the Somme and Ypres before marching to the Menin Gate in Ypres on August 8 1928.
Exactly 90 years later, thousands of Legion representatives have travelled to Belgium to recreate the 1928 Battlefields Pilgrimage and visit the same battlefields.
On Wednesday, branch standards and wreaths were paraded along the same route to the Menin Gate for the One Hundred Days ceremony to commemorate the last 100 days of WW1 and represent an entire generation that served while defending their country.
Daniel and Jon’s participation in the commemorations was supported by Lyme Regis Town Council, which funded the standard bearer’s expenses to attend and represent the town at this historic and poignant event.
Prior to their departure, Daniel and Jon were pictured at the town’s war memorial, which will be re-dedicated at a ceremony on September 22, coinciding with a visit from The Rifles, when the names of five additional Lyme Regis men will be added.
The photo shows Daniel carrying a special poppy wreath, with inscriptions chosen by the Mayor of Lyme Regis, Councillor Michaela Ellis, and president of the Royal British Legion Lyme Regis branch, Philip Evans MBE, from entries submitted by St Michael’s Primary School pupils.
Legion branch chairman Ian Marshall commented: “The Lyme Regis branch is immensely proud of our young contingent attending this great event, and also extremely grateful to Lyme Regis Town Council for embracing this wonderful event and the various other specially anniversary events being planned this year to commemorate the ending of the great war 100 years ago.”
For more information about the Royal British Legion Lyme Regis branch, visit http://branches.britishlegion.org.uk/branches/lyme-regis or contact chairman Ian Marshall on 07584 993 955 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org