REPORTS ON REMEMBRANCE 2013 – updated

arboretum

Civil Defence commemoration stone at the National Memorial Arboretum, Alrewas, Staffs.

Photo by kind permission of Ron James, of the RSPCA Southport, Ormskirk & District Branch.

The inscription reads:

Remembering all the animal friends who served with such loyalty and bravery.

Remembrance services took place over Britain on November 10 in London, Eastbourne, Worthing, Liverpool, Birkenhead, Southport and mid Wales.

Remembrance Eastbourne 2013

For the 5th year running, a wreath of purple poppies was laid at Eastbourne’s War Memorial on 10 November in remembrance of all the working animals killed in wars.

We should like to warmly thank the sanctuaries, vets and retail outlets who helped sell the poppies: the Kit Wilson Trust, branches of veterinary practices Highcroft, St Anne’s and Chase Vets, plus LUSH Cosmetics and Sainsbury’s.

The purple poppies were also supported by the Eastbourne Herald, the Eastbourne Combined Ex-Services Association, Eastbourne Borough Council and our wonderful, hard-working MP Stephen Lloyd (who wore a purple poppy alongside the red in the Remembrance parade and service).

The Purple Poppy Campaign was initiated and is managed by Kent-based organisation Animal Aid www.animalaid.org.uk

Eastbourne poppies and Chica 20113

Above: Eastbourne friends with Chica (left) Photo: Helen Elliott

Poppies Eastbourne 2013

Eastbourne purple poppy supporters at the war memorial: photo Helen Elliott

pic by margaret jones

Eastbourne memorial wreath. Photo: Margaret Jones

~ Thanks, Ann, Bill Palethorpe and the Eastbourne Purple Poppy team!.

Julie Hinman writes:

The Warrior Birds commemoration took place in Worthing on 17th November.  This is an annual event held on the Sunday after Remembrance Sunday.

In  Beach House Park, a monument rockery, planted with shrubs and landscaped with steps leading to a central point with stone slabs, was made in remembrance of the pigeons.

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One stone bears the words: in memory of warrior birds who gave their lives on active service 1939–45 and for the use and pleasure of living birds.

The other reads: a bird of the air shall carry the voice and that which hath wings shall tell the matter.

this memorial is presented by Nancy Price and members of the People’s Theatre, London.
I did not know about this ceremony, so did not have a purple poppy wreath to lay, but there were two small wreaths of red poppies and two cross markers at the mound.

The Mayor, Head of Council and a British Legion representative led us up the steps to the top, where the Mayor laid a wreath made from bird seed on the slabs. He stated his attention to ensure that this becomes better known and maintained, so I shall be writing to him to encourage this and inform him of the purple poppies.

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I took on sale of purple poppies “solo” but was pleased to be able to place all 250 bar 3.  I spent a morning at Sainsbury’s.  Leaving them at 2 vets in Worthing , “Blossoms” Florist and a day or so in a school staff room, helped spread purple poppies and hopefully awareness of the campaign against animal victims of war. A generous contribution was also made by Worthing Meeting.

Next year, I plan to spread the word about the Warrior Birds monument ceremony and lay a purple poppy wreath there.

I also contacted the local Storm Gardens group.  They have transformed a small demolished area into a garden with plants and knitted and crochet flowers, animals etc.  They crocheted some purple poppies to display at the garden.

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~ Thank you, Julie, for a very different report. It is wonderful to see that pigeons, amongst the least regarded of creatures, are being honoured in this way. We look forward to hearing about your involvement next year.

Among the red poppies at the cenotaph in West Derby Village, Liverpool, is a little cross with red and purple poppies, serving as a reminder that creatures of all species suffer and die in war.

It was placed by Anne Graham, of ASWA.

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Four of us laid our poppy wreath at the cenotaph in Hamilton Square, Birkenhead. Unfortunately, the editor’s camera malfunctioned, so we have no photos.

There appeared to be fewer red poppy wreaths this year, so we had the opportunity to place our purple one in a more conspicuous position. We noticed more people stop, read the inscription and point the wreath out to their small children. Luckily we had poppies to give to them, and shall be on the look out for the chance to do more of that next year.

Our first veterinary practice signed up to sell poppies this time and two more have expressed willingness to do so next year.

Elizabeth Rowland-Elliott of Southport Local Meeting writes:

For the third year running, Southport Friends have laid a purple poppy wreath alongside the red ones at Southport Monument. There was a second purple poppy wreath laid by unknown person. Southport Quakers have also made purple poppies out of felt and one Friend has knitted a White, purple and red poppy touched with a green leaf; the wearers have answered some questions, all raising awareness of our animals.

~ Thank you, Elizabeth – some creative ideas here – very best wishes to Friends in my first Quaker Meeting! – editor.

In Warrington, our member Diane Furber obtained official council permission to lay a purple wreath – and was made welcome by ‘old soldiers’.

Our member in mid Wales, Helen Porter, reports:

Montgomery Voice for Animals laid purple poppy wreaths at three Remembrance services this year – in Welshpool, Guilsfield and Montgomery. I laid the one at Montgomery and it was very distinctive below the four red wreaths. We were warmly welcomed by the organisers. In fact the British Legion representative, not realising we had our own, purple, wreath, had ordered a conventional red one for us and done a lovely drawing of animals (horse, dog, pigeon) to go in the centre to distinguish it.

So we will use that one next year, perhaps with a few purple poppies interwoven. There was also good conversation afterwards over the tea and biscuits.

~ Thank you, Helen – lovely to have this  good news from the editor’s old stamping ground!

London: Remembrance Sunday 2013

The annual Act of Remembrance For Animals In War took place as usual at The Animals War Memorial’, Brookes Gate, off Park Lane, London.

The event included the ‘forgotten animal conscripts of war’ in our nation’s two minutes silence.

A short address was given & Worship led by Senior Anglican cleric: Pastor James Thompson from North Wales, known to so many as The Animals’ Padre. He writes:

Remembrance Sunday morning was sunny and idyllic.  The congregation this year was slightly up on last and there were around seventy folk during the main part of the ceremony.  Rev. George Ochola from Watford assisted me. Doreen – James’s wife –  read the lesson taken from Isaiah chapter eleven, and I gave the short address. Indeed, it went wonderfully well, and I sensed very much that long deceased animal victims of war were looking on from the spirit world encircling us. It was a great honour and a privilege to be there, and especially to remember the forgotten animal conscripts of war during the whole of the Nation’s two minutes of silence.

 

~ Here are the photos from the service – many thanks, James & Doreen!

 

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