December Last Post

Today in the cold we held the short ceremony with a representative from the Woking Royal Navy Association parading their Standard.

We read The Evacuee: The Poem by Arthur King and our Individual Remembrance remembered Stoker 1st Class, George David Spinner. George was aboard HMS Hood when it was sunk by the German Battleship Bismarck on 24 the May 1941 during the Battle of Denmark Strait. He is remembered on the Portsmouth Naval memorial.

Gordon’s School Pipes and Drums attended and they very kindly read the Exhortation, played the Piper’s Lament and recited the Kohima Epitaph. We are extremely pleased that young people wish to participate in our ceremony as young people being involved is part of our mission.

Our Standard Bearer was Alan Lopez. The Union Flag was paraded by our Senior Standard Bearer Tom Milne. Ruth Moore sounded the Last Post and Reveille.

Afterwards we went round to the Trench Experience for mulled wine and mince pies. A nice way to round off an outstanding year for the Brookwood Last Post Association, and we look forward to next year.

November Last Post

Today, we held a magnificent ceremony with several hundred people attending.

The Mayor of Woking, Cllr Beryl Hunwicks attended along with many Scouts, Cubs and Beavers from Woking District Scouts.

The 1st Claygate Scout and Guide band led a parade of Scouters and accompanied the hymn and National Anthem.

Gordon’s School Pipes and Drums led the parade including the Mayor and members of the public.

Paul McCue delivered the Individual Remembrance, and read a poem by 14 year old Joshua Dyer called ‘One Thousand Men are Walking’. The poem was written this year as part of a Remembrance Day project.

For the Individual Remembrance, we remembered Pilot Officer Emil Fechtner DFC RAFVR. Emil Fechtner was born on September 16th 1916 in Prague. He was in the Czech Air Force when the Germans took over Czechoslovakia in March 1939.

He joined 310 (Czech) Squadron at its formation at RAF Duxford on July 10th, 1940. He downed several German planes, including an ME109, DO17 and a ME110. He survived a crash, collision in mid-air before being killed when he crashed near Duxford on 29th October 1940, piloting a Hurricane. He is buried in Plot 28, the Czechoslovakian plot of Brookwood Military Cemetery.

Four Scouts said the Exhortation and the Last Post and Reveille was perfectly sounded by a member of 1st Claygate Scout and Guide band.

Gordon’s School Pipe Major played a highly emotional Piper’s Lament.

Today, the Union Flag was paraded by our Senior Standard Bearer Tom Milne and our Standard was paraded by Alan Lopez. Our chaplain was Rob Bennet and the sound was managed by the Scouts, for which we are very grateful.

At the end of the ceremony, the Mayor inspected the Standards and presented brass shields to the Scouts carrying the Standards that attended the 11 o’clock ceremony on 11 November 2018 at the Menin Gate as part of the centenary commemorations.

Afterwards we retired to the Trench Experience for refreshments.

For a full set of photos by Antony McCallum, see here.

Photo credits include Kevin Barker, Brian Davis and Antony McCallum.

October Last Post

Our October ceremony was a quiet affair with around 35 people attending.

We remembered Richard Read, killed on 15 December 1914, aged 21. Private Read is commemorated at the Menin Gate, Ypres.

Alan Lopez was our Standard Bearer, Bert Stead our padre, Mrs Ruth Moore sounded the Last Post and Tom Milne our Parade Marshal. We were also joined by the Royal British Legion Surrey County Standard Bearer, Ashley Dickinson.

Afterwards we had refreshments at the Trench Experience.