Big turn-out for armistice day service on the day Stevenage also marks 70 years as a New Town

PUBLISHED: 16:38 11 November 2016 | UPDATED: 17:17 11 November 2016

Remembrance day

Remembrance day

Archant

People turned out in force this morning for a poignant service to mark armistice day in Stevenage town centre.

Reembrance DayReembrance Day

Veterans, councillors and dignitaries gathered in front of a large crowd in Town Square for the special service and two-minute’s silence at 11am.

There was a short service with readings and prayers by Stevenage mayor John Lloyd and the town’s MP, Stephen McPartland.

It was even more significant as it fell on the 70th anniversary of the day Stevenage was officially designated a New Town on November 11 1946.

Brian Kemp, 79, served in the Royal Air Force in the 1950s and has lived in Stevenage for 60 years.

Remembrance DayRemembrance Day

His grandmother’s house in London was completely destroyed by the Blitz, and he lived through it.

He told the Comet: “It’s good for youngsters to know their grandparents fought so they could live.”

Terrence Gray, 79, who was also in the RAF during the 1950s, added: “Remembrance is a great thing because the younger generation will know and understand what a lot of people had to go through, and it applies today to the troops coming back from places like Afghanistan.”

Stevenage Borough Council leader Sharon Taylor added: “As the years go by it’s more important than ever to remember those who made such a big sacrifice.

Brian Kemp attended the Armistice Day service in Stevenage town centre on Friday.Brian Kemp attended the Armistice Day service in Stevenage town centre on Friday.

“This year it’s particularly important because it’s the 100th anniversary of the Battle of the Somme.

“It’s been a very difficult year across the world in some ways and we can only hope we will learn the lessons of the past and what they teach us, so we can create a more peaceful world for the future.”

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