By Tristan Harris Wednesday 21 August 2013 Updated: 22/08 16:46
THE ANNUAL service and parade to commemorate the 68th anniversary of the Burma Campaign was held in Bromsgrove on Saturday (August 17).
The event, to mark Victory over Japan (VJ Day), took place at the Burma Memorial in Crown Close - the biggest monument in the country to that particular conflict.
Between 80 and 90 people, from all over the Midlands, attended the event, which was organised by the Bromsgrove branch of the Burma Star Association.
Among them were seven veterans from the Burma 14th Army, along with families who were remembering their fathers' and grandfathers' roles in the jungle campaign, and a prisoner of war of the Japanese who was there to honour his fellow prisoners who never returned from their time in captivity.
The service was conducted by Padre Canon Graham Lyall of Worcester and featured special prayers for those currently serving from Revd Dr Tom Atfield, the Curate of Bromsgrove's St John’s Church.
A total of 18 regimental and Royal British Legion standards were on parade, including two from the Worcestershire and Sherwood Foresters Regimental Association. They honoured members of the 2nd and 7th Battalions of the Worcestershire Regiment which fought in Burma.
Wreaths were laid by Roy Hodge, the honory president of the Bromsgrove Burma Star Association, Pam Stubbs, from the Birmingham Association of Far East Prisoners of War (FEPO), and members of Bromsgrove Royal Naval and Royal Air Force Associations.
Two wreaths were laid on the Worcestershire Regiment’s plaque by the Worcester and Sherwood Foresters Regimental Association and Bromsgrove civic head, Coun Helen Jones, laid a wreath on behalf of the district council.
Jack McDermott laid a wreath to commemorate his grandfather who served in Burma and Katie Hyde placed one on behalf of the Bromsgrove Burma Star Widows and her grandfather who also served in Burma.
A poignant bugle rendition of the Last Post and Reveille was given by Royal Marine cadet Sgt Claire Cardus from TS Kingfisher - the Redditch and Bromsgrove Sea Cadets - and the parade was orchestrated by WO1(Retd) David Hill.
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