GALLERY+VIDEO: Thousands of people across Huntingdonshire fall silent in tribute to the fallen
- Credit: Archant
Record crowds gathered across Huntingdonshire to salute the war dead on Remembrance Day.
Silence fell across the district again on Tuesday (November 11) as Acts of Remembrance took place in villages, towns, schools and work places to mark Armistice Day.
In Huntingdon, RBL branch secretary Judith Armstrong, said the parade on Sunday had been amazing. “It was a wonderful parade led by the RAF Wyton Voluntary Band.
“The public, when we paraded away from the wreath-laying to take the salute at Newton’s Court, were clapping and cheering, children were waving their flags, it was really quite splendid.
“There were more people than previous years. Obviously the support for the armed forces is still there.”
It was a similar story elsewhere in the district, including St Ives where there was a special commemoration for William Roden, the first St Ives man to be killed in the First World War.
A Private with the 1st Battalion, Bedfordshire Regiment, he died in action in Flanders on November 9 1914.
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He is among 178 men and women who will be commemorated by the St Ives and District branch of the RBL over the next four years, said branch secretary Alan Scott.
The branch’s Poppy Appeal co-ordinator Mike Robinson added: “The crowds were the biggest I’ve known. It was truly amazing.”
St Neots’ parade organiser and president of the town’s branch of the Royal British Legion, Keith Ridley, was delighted by the number of people, particularly youngsters, on Sunday.
“There must have been 800 to 1,000 people lining the High Street and when we went round to the church and there were four hundred to five hundred at the war memorial,” he said.
“It was great to see the youth of St Neots turn out in the way they did. They did the town proud. For the last two years, the public has turned out in force.”
In Ramsey, where the procession was led by the Cambridgeshire Caledonian Pipe Band, parade marshall and branch chairman Fred Butler, said: “We had more people than we’ve ever had, which is very encouraging.”
Meanwhile, the Huntingdon branch of the RBL has been saved from closure thanks to a number of new faces coming forward.
Mrs Armstrong was concerned it might have to close due to a lack of numbers and appealed for new recruits to attend a meeting last week.
“We had quite a few younger people turn up and another half a dozen are coming to the next meeting, which is brilliant.”
The next meeting will be held in the community room at Tesco, Abbots Ripton Road, Huntingdon, from 7.30pm on Tuesday, December 2. All are welcome to attend.