Remembrance in Godalming
Remembrance Sunday, one of the most important dates in the Town’s Civic Calendar is on Sunday, 8 November, but unfortunately, due to the current restrictions, the Remembrance Sunday Parade and Service cannot be held in the same way as in previous years.
In order to reduce the risk of spreading the COVID-19 virus, the usual Act of Remembrance at the War Memorial in the Phillips Memorial Park cannot take place. Instead, a combined Service and Act of Remembrance will be held at the Godalming Parish Church of St Peter & St Paul. A two minutes silence will be observed and there will be a reading of the Exhortation and Kohima Prayer, as well as the laying of wreaths.
Due to social distancing requirements, the Church’s capacity is greatly reduced. The Town Mayor, Service Veterans, civic leaders and representatives from community groups and organisations will be in attendance. Service Veterans who wish to attend the Church Service are requested to call 01483 523575 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to reserve a seat. The Mayor will lay a wreath on behalf of the Town and arrangements will be made for wreaths to be laid on behalf of community groups, organisations and private individuals. Those attending the Church Service will need to wear a face covering. Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal face masks can be sourced from www.poppyshop.org.uk
To enable as many residents as possible to pay their respects on Remembrance Sunday, the Service of Remembrance will be live streamed on Facebook and will also be available to view on YouTube after the event. For this year, residents are encouraged to stay safe and pay their respects to those who served and to those who serve today by observing the Act of Remembrance from home. The live stream will be available on the day.
Godalming Town Mayor, Cllr Penny Rivers said “Godalming Town Council in the pursuit of peace, acknowledges and fully respects our armed forces and hopes the sacrifices paid by those who have gone before is not needed as it was then. COVID-19 affects everything we do, yet we will mark Remembrance 2020 with respect, dignity and safety.”
In addition to watching the Remembrance Service live stream on Sunday, 8 November, the Mayor is encouraging all residents, whether at home or at work, to honour those who paid the ultimate sacrifice by observing the National Two Minute Silence at 11.00 am on Wednesday, 11 November.
As with many other usual activities, this year’s national Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal is severely affected by the current restrictions. Residents can support our Service Veterans and those currently serving in the Armed Forces, including those playing their role in the COVID-19 pandemic, by visiting www.poppyshop.org.uk