The Remembrance Ceremony
At Noon on Sunday 11th November 2018, the centenary anniversary of the end of WWI, the weather was dry and mild at 10ºC as residents of Wilmington came to the War Memorial in the grounds of The Rosemary Centre in the High Road to remember those who gave in lives in the ‘war to end all wars’ and subsequent conflicts.
The Ceremony was conducted by Jean Hook a Lay Reader at and Acting Minister of St Michael and All Angels Church, assisted by Sidesman John Strachan as follows -
Order of Ceremony
Minister: We have come together in the presence of God our heavenly Father, the shepherd of souls and giver of eternal life to remember before Him and commend to His sure keeping those whom we knew and whose memory we treasure; and alll who have lived and died in the service of humankind.
Almighty and eternal God for whose love in Christ we cannot be parted, either by death or life; hear our prayers and thanksgivings for all whom we remember this day; and especially those who lived in this village of Wilmington who died in war and we remember before You those who are commemorated by this war memorial; fulfil in them the purpose of your love; and bring us all, with them, to your eternal joy; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen
They shall grow not old as we that are left to grow old; age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn. At the going down of the sun and in the morning, we will remember them.
All: We will remember them.
The Last Post played a lone bugler
Reveille played by a lone Bugler
Minister: Grant them, O Lord eternal rest.
All: And let light perpetual shine on them.
Minister: Ever-living God, we remember those whom you have gathered from the storm of war into the peace of your presence; bring justice to all peoples and establish harmony among the nations, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen
Let us pledge ourselves anew to the service of God and our fellow men and women; that we may help, encourage and comfort others, and support those working for the relief of the needy and for the peace and welfare to the nations.
All: Lord God our Father we pledge ourselves to serve you and all humankind in the cause of peace, for the relief of want and suffering and for the praise of your name. Guide us by your Spirit; give us wisdom; give us courage; give us hope and keep us faithful now and always. Amen.
Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil.For thine is the kingdom, the power and the glory for ever and ever. Amen.
Minister: The Blessing
Laying of Wreaths
Wreaths were then laid by representatives of the following Groups or Organisations -
Wilmington Parish Council - ‘Lest We Forget’
Wilmington Women’s Institute (WTI*)
Wilmington Village Conservative Association - ‘In Remembrance’
1st Wilmington Scouts Group - Beavers, Cubs, Scouts, Explorers (WTI)
West Kent Freemasons - ‘Members & their families of the Kent Lodge No. 8184’ (WTI¹)
Wilmington Academy - ‘All students and staff’ (WTI)
The Wilmington Society (WTI)
Wilmington Axstane Probus Club (WTI)
Wilmington Primary School
Wilmington Active Retirement Association
Wilmington Grammar School for Boys (WTI)
Wilmington Grammar School for Girls - ‘Students and staff’ (WTI)
Wilmington Memorial Hall
NB - *Indicates that the Wreath carried an insignia or logo
¹Indicates that the Wreath carried the Freemasons WWI Centenary insignia
A wreath was laid on behalf of the Royal West Kent Regiment (carrying the Invicta insignia and a coloured image of Standard Bearer and wreaths at the Terte War Memorial) with the following dedication
'Private S/8933 Leonard Bristow, 1st Battalion the Queen’s Own Royal West Kent Regiment of XXXXXXX. Son of Alfred and Norah Bristow. Born 1896. Killed in action Wulvergheim, Belgium. No known grave, remembered here and on the Menin Gate Memorial, Ypres, Belgium and also by the creation of the Terte War Memorial, St Ghislain, Mons'
A number of personal remembrances were then laid including an ‘In Remembrance’ Cross with the handwritten inscription ‘James Gibbs, Royal West Kent Rgt. Killed in Battle of Cambrai September 1918, aged 18’ and a hand-painted poppy on a flint
Following the Wreath Laying Service refreshments were served in the Memorial Hall by courtesy of and with thanks to the Hall’s Management Committee and Wilmington Women’s Institute. Those present were also able to visit a WWI Exhibition in the Heritage Centre thanks to the Centre's volunteers.