Remembrance Day Parade draws a crowd of hundreds

By Holly Hume

A Remembrance Parade followed by a service took place in Victoria Park, Leicester, on Sunday in honour of members of the armed forces who have died fighting for the Commonwealth.

 

The annual parade and service was attended by a crowd of hundreds, including veterans, serving military, Leicestershire Police and Official Dignitaries.

The parade began at De Montfort Hall and made its way to The Arch of Remembrance, where the service was held at 10.55am.

The ’Last Post’ was played as two maroons were fired to announce the start of the service, before the parade was called to stand at ease.

 

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The Deputy Commander, the Lord Mayor and the Lord-Lieutenant on the saluting dais

 

There were several readings, the most famous of all being ‘In Flanders Fields’ by John McCrae, read by The Lord-Lieutenant of Leicestershire, Jennifer Lady Gretton DCVO.

Children from years five and six at Shaftesbury Junior School performed a reading of poetry they had composed for a school project written in pseudonym as local fallen soldiers.

 

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Standard bearers

 

Hymns were sung and prayers were said for fallen servicemen who are remembered every November.

The Junior Girls and Songmen of Leicester Cathedral and the City of Leicester Singers led the singing throughout the service and The Salvation Army Band played as wreaths were laid on the memorial.

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Wreaths laid on the Arch of Remembrance

The Seaforth Highlanders Pipes and Drums carried out a short wreath laying ceremony after the main service.

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Drum Major Bruce Meadows of The Seaforth Higlanders Pipes and Drums

 

World War One claimed the lives of an estimated 887,858 UK military, left 1,675,000 wounded and a further 744,000 soldiers who went missing in action.

Remembrance day began to honour all those lost in World War One, and now honours all those who have been lost in the wars since.

Attendees included both locals and visitors who had come far to pay their respects.

The service was sponsored by Leicestershire County Council.

Petition to save Glenfield Hospital’s heart unit reaches more than 60,000 signatures

By Beth Mosettig

A protest to save the children’s heart surgery unit at City’s Glenfield Hospital is taking place in Jubilee Square this weekend.

The march and petition to save the heart surgery unit has had overwhelming support, receiving more than 60,000 signatures on both paper and digital versions.

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(Credit Steve Score) Protesters at a previous march to save the the centre on Belgrave Road

Steve Score, 58, organised the protest as the unit’s possible closure is an issue close to his heart.

He said: “My son had open heart surgery last year at Glenfield and he had fantastic support from the hospital, he has met amazing people and it would be a tragedy if children didn’t have the same access to that care.”

The hospital provides surgery and check-ups for children all over the East Midlands who will have to travel much further if the unit closes.

NHS England have denied the closure of the unit is to do with the government announcing that there is to be £22 billion worth of cuts to NHS services.

They defended the closure of the unit, saying that heart surgeons have to do a minimum of 125 operations to keep their level of skill up to scratch.

Glenfield’s unit has three heart surgeons who have to perform 375 surgeries every year and they are not reaching that target.

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(Credit Steve Score) previous march to save the centre earlier this month

Mr Score said: “Last year my son was number 332 and the need for children’s heart surgery is increasing, so if NHS England had a little patience they would reach their target easily.”

Many residents are worried that the closure will have a knock on effect for other services.

Glenfield is also the only hospital in the country to have an Extra Corporeal Membrane Oxygenation (ECMO) centre for adults, paediatrics, and neonatal services.

Jillian Humphrey, 43, said: “From a personal perspective I know that my daughter will need at least one more open heart surgery. She has trauma issues relating to her hospital admissions and surgeries.

“By forcing her to go to an unfamiliar place with unfamiliar staff her issues are likely to be exacerbated leading to more trauma.

“As well as if I have to travel with her to Birmingham or London it will leave me isolated in an unfamiliar place with no support.”

Protesters are meeting at Victoria Park car park at 11am on Saturday, October 29 to march towards Jubilee Square for the rally at 1pm.

The petition to save Glenfield hospital’s children’s heart unit is available to sign online: https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/160455