Community comes together at the 11th hour, on the 11th day of the 11th month
Twenty thousand silk poppies floated down into the silence at Coldstream war memorial on Sunday, November 11, landing on those gathered to pay their respects.
Those 20,000 poppies ensured that the aim to have 111,111 poppies (representing the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month) on display in Coldstream on November 11, 2018 was achieved.
The local branch of Honour Our Troops had led the 2014-18 Poppy Project, increasing each year the number of poppies made and the number of people involved in what became a hugely successful community project.
Councillor John Greenwell said: “As the Armed Forces & Veterans Champion at Scottish Borders Council I was extremely pleased to see so many communities engaging in commemorating the 100th anniversary of the guns falling silent and the end of WW1 including my own community of Coldstream.
“Four years ago Honour Our Troops(HOT), a small charity which has a branch based in Coldstream led by Annemarie McCall, decided to take on a four year poppy project engaging with many volunteers to produce displays each year and building up to what proved to be a very moving tribute on Armistice Day. “The HOT team certainly achieved their aim and made the town very proud because along with the poppy display there was a visit by the war horse (created by David Shepherd), which proved to be very popular at a sell out WW1 concert held in the Legion on Saturday night.
“I would like to thank every community and group that took part in commemorations during the weekend, young and old.”
As a finale to the Armistice Day events HOT volunteers, helped by the Ex-Coldstreamers and others lit thousands of candles on the road side at all entrances to the town and around the war memorial on the High Street, to ‘welcome home’ the returning soldiers.
Those who didn’t return were honoured in the garden behind the war memorial - a cross put in the grass for each of the 46 Coldstream men who died in World War One, with their name, rank, age and the year they died.
Coldstream will never forget.