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Joining together to remember fallen heroes

SOLIHULL fell silent on Sunday as thousands stopped to remember the fallen at events around the borough.

SOLIHULL fell silent on Sunday as thousands stopped to remember the fallen at events around the borough.

A traditional parade took place in Solihull town centre, with wreaths of poppies placed at the base of the St Alphege war memorial.

The Mayor of Solihull, Coun Irene Chamberlain, joined crowds to play tribute as the church clock struck 11.

David Mouzer, chairman of Solihull Royal British Legion, said on Wednesday that the branch had already raised over £40,400.

The Poppy Appeal is on course for another record-breaking year with the branch expecting to smash last year’s total of £55,000. “We’ve had fantastic support from the local public, despite the economic situation,” he said. “This is an event that seems to bring the whole community together and we also get tremendous support from volunteers.

“For the past five years, Solihull has come first or second in the Warwickshire county for the amount of money raised. That’s something to be proud of.”

People also turned out in force for the procession down Stratford Road, Shirley, with guides, cadets and a pipe band among those taking part.

Ernest Riley, chairman of Shirley Royal British Legion, said: “In recent years we’ve had more people than ever turn out to line the streets.”

John Edwards, from Shirley, visited the St James’ war memorial on Armstice Day itself and laid a wreath on behalf of the British Humanist Association.

The organisation had appealed for members to leave tributes at local events, after a representative was refused a place at London’s Cenotaph.

Residents also turned out for Remembrance events in the likes of Knowle, Hockley Heath, Hampton-in-Arden and Castle Bromwich.

But the decision to once again hold the Armistice Day service inside St Alphege Church disappointed some visitors.

As last year, New Road and Church Hill Road remained open on November 11, with no event held at the war memorial.

John Payne, from Monkspath, said: “There were buses going past, a road-sweeper even pulled up at one point, all while people were trying to observe the two minutes’ silence.”

 

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