Photo: Folkestone Town Council

On Friday 30 June, Folkestone honoured the 305 Canadian soldiers who gave their lives in WWI and rest in the Shorncliffe Military Cemetery.

The Canada Day Service is an annual event that brings together local and Canadian officials, military personnel, veterans and schoolchildren to pay their respects.

Photo: Folkestone Town Council

Among those attending were the Worshipful Town Mayor of Folkestone, Councillor Belinda Walker, Major Dennis Bradley (Retd) DL, LCdr Mombourquette from the Canadian High Commission, officers from the Canadian Forces Detachment in the UK, representatives of The Royal Gurkha Rifles, members of local ex-service associations and their Standard Bearers and local dignitaries. The Band of the Brigade of Gurkhas also performed music for the service.

Photo: Folkestone Town Council

Deputy Town Clerk, Toni Brenchley, who organised the service, said “Over 250 children from local schools laid posies on the Canadian graves, it was an amazing sight.” This tradition dates back to over 100 years ago and the Mayor of Folkestone in 1927 vowed that “As far as Folkestone is concerned, the ceremony should last as long as it is in the power of human beings to do so.” This statement is strongly supported by all who took part in the ceremony.

The current Town Mayor of Folkestone, Councillor Belinda Walker, expressed her gratitude to past and present Regiments based at Sir John Moore Barracks for their support in keeping the annual Canada Day Commemorations alive and said “Let us all hope that we can continue this tradition for many, many years to come and pay tribute to the 305 Canadian Soldiers buried at the Shorncliffe Cemetery, providing some comfort to their relations in Canada who are unable to visit their graves.”

By Ed

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