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Operation Banner: Bishop's Stortford mayor joins former Armed Forces personnel for service




The mayor, Cllr Norma Symonds, paid tribute on Sunday (August 18) to the 1,441 UK Armed Forces personnel who died as a result of operations in Northern Ireland or paramilitary actions in other countries.

To mark the 50th anniversary of Operation Banner, the deployment of troops on the streets of Ulster, Bishop's Stortford's civic leader took part in a short commemoration at the town's war memorial in Castle Gardens.

The service at 11am was conducted by the Rev Mandy Brown, vicar of Holy Trinity Church in South Street.

From left: Ernie Large; Kathy Stanes, vice-chairwoman of TRBL Bishop’s Stortford branch; president John Robinson; Richard Allen; the mayor Cllr Norma Symonds; Cllr Graham McAndrew and Linda Smith (15489301)
From left: Ernie Large; Kathy Stanes, vice-chairwoman of TRBL Bishop’s Stortford branch; president John Robinson; Richard Allen; the mayor Cllr Norma Symonds; Cllr Graham McAndrew and Linda Smith (15489301)

John Robinson, president of the Royal British Legion's Bishop's Stortford branch, addressed those assembled to pay their respects before prayers were said.

After a minute's silence, Mr Robinson then read the Kohima Epitaph: "When you go home, tell them of us and say, for your tomorrow, we gave our today."

Wreaths were laid by Kathy Stanes, vice chairwoman of the Stortford Legion branch, and by two past members of the forces who served in the province.

Operation Banner memorial in Bishop's Stortford (15489288)
Operation Banner memorial in Bishop's Stortford (15489288)

Operation Banner began on August 14, 1969, in response to growing sectarian unrest. It ended on July 31, 2007. Over almost four decades, the General Service Medal (Northern Ireland) was awarded to more than 300,000 servicemen and women.


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