A RECORD attendance of hundreds of people was seen in Wellington Park on Sunday (November 12) for the town’s annual remembrance service by the war memorial.

The number present for the afternoon service was so great that some people were unable to gain entrance to the park.

This was despite rainfall and falling temperature throughout most of the day, only easing up in the two hours before the occasion.

A parade through Wellington was held before a Remembrance Sunday service. Video by Chris Penney.

A Remembrance parade departed at 2.55 pm from Wellington School, in South Street, to march to the park for the 3.15 pm service, returning afterwards.

The parade was led by members of the school’s Combined Cadet Force Corps of Drums and the Wellington branch of the Royal British Legion (RBL).

Wellington Baptist Church minister the Rev Sam Griffiths, who is the legion’s chaplain, gave an address and the Rev Colin Simpson, St John’s Church priest-in-charge, led prayers.

Retired vicar the Rev Dr Maria Hearl led a remembrance service at the war memorial in Sampford Arundel on Sunday.
Retired vicar the Rev Dr Maria Hearl led a remembrance service at the war memorial in Sampford Arundel on Sunday. ( )

Names of the fallen from the First and Second World Wars who are recorded on the four sides of the war memorial were read loud by legion president Michael Rose as wreaths were laid by representatives of community organisations.

On Armistice Day (November 11), a two-minute silence was held at 11 am in Wellington town centre after a short civic march from the town council offices in Fore Street.

The march was led by Wellington Mayor Cllr Marcus Barr and standard bearers from the legion branch and Wellington School.

It included town councillors past and present, RBL members, veterans, representatives of all three Armed Forces, and Wellington Army Cadets.

Wellington Silver Band’s Graham Davies played the Last Post.

On Sunday morning, a group of veterans opposed to the timing of an afternoon service held their own event in Wellington Cemetery as they have done for a number of years before retiring to Rockwell Green War Memorial Club.

In Sampford Arundel, a short service was held at the village war memorial on Sunday morning, led by retired vicar the Rev Dr Maria Hearl.

Crowds attended a Remembrance Sunday service around Hemyock war Memorial.
Crowds attended a Remembrance Sunday service around Hemyock War Memorial. (Dave Bawler)

In Hemyock, the parish church of St Mary’s was filled for the annual Remembrance Sunday service.

A parade from the village hall was led by 1st Hemyock Scout Group, who laid wreaths at the war memorial at the end of the service, which was taken by Dr David Major with organist Nigel Atkinson.

Wreaths were also laid by parish council chairman Cllr Paul Doble, a pupil from the village primary school, and a member of the poppy club.

The Exhortation was given by Tim Barton and a collection for the Royal British Legion raised more than £300.

On Saturday, Armistice Day, the Rev John Stone led a short Act of Remembrance alongside Hemyock War Memorial at 11 am which was attended by more than 50 people, including ex-Service personnel and retired Lt Col Tim Courtenay, who gave the Exhortation.

David Bawler, RBL poppy appeal local co-ordinator for the upper Culm Valley, thanked all those who were involved over the weekend, including a group who had festooned the church and the Parish Pump memorial with poppies, and the poppy sellers whose contribution to raising funds was ‘immeasurable’.