The Somerset Guardian, 15th November 2023
Remembrance Day is always a time for reflection. It is a chance to remember those who gave their lives to defend us, to express gratitude to our current Armed Forces and to think about what is currently happening in the world.
This year, I was privileged to attend the parade and service in Keynsham. The streets were lined with young and old alike who wanted to pay their respects to the fallen heroes who fought to preserve our sovereignty, liberty and security.
Even though it was a miserable, grey, drizzly day I was so impressed by the number of people present – the largest turnout in any year that I have seen - who came to watch the parade with pride as it made its way to the Memorial Gate at the park and back down Keynsham High Street. As always, there was an air of solemnity except for the ripple of applause as those in uniform marched past.
The Remembrance service was held at St. John the Baptist, which, as usual, was full. The most moving part of the service is always when the names of the fallen are read out. The number always astonishes me for what was in 1914 quite a small settlement.
As the crisis in the Middle East and the Ukraine invasion rage on as well as other conflicts in the world, we are reminded that living in a relatively stable and peaceful existence is something that should be appreciated. It is rural communities, like Keynsham, that are the beating heart of our nation and perpetuate the sense of cohesion and steadfastness that we should be grateful for; places full of people who value the history of their community and pay homage to the fallen who gave their lives for our freedom.
As always, please do not hesitate to contact me if I can be of any assistance: firstname.lastname@example.org.