Huge crowds gathered in Bishop Auckland Market Place on Remembrance Sunday to pay tribute to those who had fought and lost their lives in war. The Cenotaph Service at St Anne’s Church in the Market Place is organised annually by Bishop Auckland Town Council in partnership with The Royal British Legion and an estimated 2,000 people attended this year’s Remembrance Service and Parade, led by WO2 MacFarlane from 8th Battalion the Rifles.
Followed by Bishop Auckland Pipes and Drums, 2505 Air Cadets, Army Cadet Force, Royal Air Force Cadets, Motivational Preparation College for Training, the Scouts, Guides, veterans and members of the public, the 8th Battalion the Rifles set off from the Newgate Centre and marched to the War Memorial in the Market Place.
The Service at the War Memorial was led by Reverend Matt Keddilty, St Anne’s Church. Two minutes’ silence was impeccably held at exactly 11.00am marking the Anniversary of the end of World War One.
Pipes played ‘Abide with me’ as Dr. Robert McManners, Deputy Lord Lieutenant, representing HRH Queen Elizabeth II, laid the first wreath followed by Joy Allen, Mayor of Bishop Auckland who laid a wreath on behalf of the town. A further thirty two wreaths were laid by representatives of the forces, police, fire service and many other organisations and individuals associated with the town.
The Mayor of Bishop Auckland, Councillor Joy Allen, said: “I cannot praise the people of Bishop Auckland enough for the tremendous turn out today which was dignified, poignant and showed that our community has not forgotten the sacrifice made by so many.”
“The Council would also like to say a huge thank you to those behind the scenes who ensure the Act of Remembrance is made possible each year, particularly Ruth Wright from the Royal British Legion, WO2 MacFarlane from the 8th Battalion the Rifles, Rev Matt Keddilty and Clergy from St Anne’s Church, members from the 2505 Air Cadets, Mike Donne from SSAFA, Bishop Auckland Police, The Army Cadets – Bishop Auckland, Bishop Auckland Pipes and Drums and the DLI Bishop Auckland Branch.”
This year the Bishop Auckland Remembrance service was closed with prayer by Bishop of Durham, Paul Butler.