Sidmouth RBL chairman ends standard-bearing duties

New RBL standard bearer for Sidmouth Remembrance parade after 18 years

THERE will be a new Royal British Legion standard bearer at this year’s Remembrance Day services and parade.

Having carried the standard for the Legion for the past 18 years, Sidmouth’s RBL chairman, Dave O’Connor, has passed the honour to ex-serviceman John Hayes, who once served with the Lancashire Regiment.

“I have been carrying the standard for 18 years. We are all getting older,” explained Dave, who has recently felt the strain of carrying the standard a number of times to honour repatriated servicemen at Wootton Bassett.

He will be delivering the standard to Mr Hayes, a former employee at Sidmotuh Victoria Hospital, this week ready for next week’s Remembrance Day parade and Garden of Remembrance services.

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This year marks the 90th anniversary of the Royal British Legion, which members celebrated earlier in the year at Armed Forces Day.

On Armistice Day, November 11, A short dedication of the Garden of Remembrance will take place at 10.30am with people wishing to place poppy crosses into a metal crucifix frame at Sidmouth Parish Church. There will then be a short service around the War Memorial.

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Mr Hayes will bear the RBL standard at this service and at the Remembrance Day parade on Sunday, November 13.

Those wishing to take part in the parade, which will be led by Sidmouth Town Band, should line up outside the Co-Op, High Street, for a 10.40am start.

Veterans, service men and women, uniformed organisations and representatives from businesses and groups from the town, will march from the top of High Street to the parish church.

There, Rector, the Reverend Prebendary David James will lead a short service at the War Memorial at 11am, followed by a church service after the laying of poppy wreaths.

This year the parade will go through the church lych gate to enable more people to gather near the War Memorial.

After the main service, tea, coffee and biscuits will be laid on at the War Memorial Club opposite the church.

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