Comet country pays respects on Armistice Day

REMEMBRANCE services have been taking place up and down Comet country this morning (Thursday) as people pay their respects to those who have served in times of war.

Two-minute silences were held at 11am across the area, with Royal British Legion branches at Baldock, Hitchin Letchworth GC and Stevenage all organising public Armistice Day events.

Letchworth GC Rugby club held their own ceremony for the fallen last week, on Sunday, November 7.

Club president Brian Burke said: “It was a day when both minis and juniors were at home and we felt that it was important that they were here to mark this important occasion.

“Letchworth GC was the only rugby club in existence during the Second World War and we lost 17 men in that conflict - over a full team if you like!”

The club’s oldest surviving member, ex-RAF officer Gordon Collinson, was on hand to tell junior members about events that happened over 70 years ago, bringing the names on the Honours Board back to life.

The 87-year-old, who has occupied captain, chairman and president positions at the club, has also compiled a wealth of information on those who never made it home - including details of a daring escape - which will form part of the club’s archives and is available for viewing at their Baldock Road-based home.

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Mr Burke added: “Gordon, or Colly as he is known in the club, was a great hit with the youngsters.

“A lot of them are studying the history of the Second World War and here was a chance to meet someone who lived through it and flew Hurricanes and Spitfires in the process, complete with the RAF statutory handle bar moustache.

“I am glad that we thought to mark the occasion and would like to thank Colly and all the youngsters for making it such a successful event.”