Our first, practical, act of remembrance was the distribution of boxes of poppies to each of the local pubs on behalf of the Royal British Legion, followed up by the annual ‘tour’ of Buckden with our grandchildren to sell the poppies. Stories recounted by the villagers made the experience all the more personal and ‘alive’ for our 7 and 10 year olds.
The dressing of church, in advance of Armistice Day and the Centenary of the ending of WW1, was a wonderful joint effort by the village. The final result was the culmination of knitting well over 1000 poppies; the majority were in different hues of red, but there was also a display in purple for the animals who served their part, together with another in white to remember all other victims who suffered from the consequences of battles – those who lost their homes, or were injured, both physically and mentally – and demonstrate a commitment to peace.
Included in the displays were ten silhouettes of soldiers* that ‘sat’ throughout the church. Nine were named after those listed on the church war memorial, while the tenth represented those ‘unknown’ to us, but who had also given their lives. Each named soldier had a short biography placed beside him. Comments made by locals and visitors alike all spoke of the poignancy of the setting.
* www.therebutnotthere.org.uk (highly recommended viewing)
Our Service of Remembrance will start at 10:30am at St. Michael and All Angels, Hubberholme, to which all are welcome. In the evening we will gather on the bridge over the River Wharfe that links the Church with The George Inn – at one time the vicarage and for over a century an inn kept by the parish clerk or the church warden and belonging to the church.
This gathering, just before 7pm, will be part of ‘A Nation’s Tribute’; at 6:55pm the Last Post will be played, at 7pm ‘WW1 Beacons of Light’ will be lit and at 7:05pm the church bells will be ‘Ringing Out for Peace’. At this moment we will join Town Criers throughout the United Kingdom and other countries around the world in an ‘International Cry for Peace around the World’.
The display in church (and outside) will be maintained until 18th November – do come and visit if you can. I’m afraid our photos here cannot hope to do full justice to the actual atmosphere created. Other pictures can be viewed on our local village website: www.buckden.org .