Berwickshire remembers

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In the year of the hundredth anniversary of the outbreak of World War I, Berwickshire united in the traditional two minutes of silence to remember those who went to war and never returned home.

Many people paused in their day at eleven o’clock on November 11, the hour the Armistice was signed in 1918, while others gathered at war memorials in our towns and villages.

In Duns, Lord Lieutenant Jeanna Swans laid a wreath at the town’s war memorial, before laying another at the memorial to Polish soldiers.

In Coldstream, standards were paraded through the town before they were lowered in front of the memorial.

Similarly, in Eyemouth, the parade was led by pipers from the parish church to the memorial.

At Whitsome and Edrom, remembrance services were held by Rev Alan Cartwright and Rev Ken Walker respectively. Rev Cartwright reported an excellent turnout of young and old, which he had also seen at a service in Ladykirk.

At Fogo, the congregation went up to the War Memorial to observe the two minutes silence, and to watch the laying of a cross-shaped poppy wreath, by Sqn. Ldr. Charles D. Cartwright. It is always a moving experience as the silence at Fogo 
is observed at the memorial for those who died in World War I and within a few yards of the 16 war graves from World War II.

At Leithholm the silence was preceded by William Ramsay’s rendition of The Flowers of the Forest, while at Swinton the commemorative wreath was laid by Douglas MacAllan.

Old and young were joined in remembering the fallen - exemplified at Reston, where Sunday School pupils had been fingerpainting poppies in the week leading up to the eleventh.

Villagers at Birgham gathered around the war memorial cairn, along with the Royal British Legion Scotland Coldstream Branch and County Standards. This year also saw the unveiling of a new plaque in the village bearing the names of the five Birgham men who were killed in World War I. This joins the plaque installed four years ago with the six names from World War II.

The Birgham War Memorial was built in 2000 as a Millennium project and the installation of the new plaque now completes the lengthy research to discover the names of Birgham’s fallen and honour them.