Wreath-laying ceremonies

Wreath 2003Once again, this year, my father took part in the Remembrance Day march past the Cenotaph in London, but this year also saw the first wreath-laying ceremony at HMS Dunedin’s permanent memorial at the National Arboretum.At 1326 – coinciding with the reported time that the first torpedo hit HMS Dunedin – the Last Post was sounded at the Dunedin Plinth at the National Arboretum.

A Marine Bugler, one Naval Standard and Bas Bowyer – who did so much to establish the memorial in the first place – officiated. The families of Marine W.F. Bowyer and Ord. Seaman T.E. Billings were present during the short service. Two wreaths were laid – the Dunedin Society’s and the Biddings’. Click here for the Order of Service.

A similar ceremony took place at the Royal Navy War Memorial at Southsea. Anne Randall, whose father was lost when Dunedin went down, was there at 1.26pm in the presence of about a dozen others to mark the day in a quiet act of remembrance. Several people laid red roses and Anne read the Exhortation.

November 2003 From left to right:

J. W.Simmons, representing  Petty Officer G.A.Owens
J., M., and C. Charlton, representing  Bernard White, AB
Anne Randall, representing  Lt.Cdr.R.M.H. Sowdon
Heather Turner & Anne Leppard,  representing  George E.Wells
Gwenda Board, representing S.J.P.Temple, Ord.Signm (and his friend Don Wells, Signm)
Bill Gill, R.M.  Survivor, and President of the Dunedin Society
Isabel Gill.
Alan Jarvis, Writer, served in Dunedin and left October 1941
Kathleen Jarvis.

Photograph taken by David Allen,  representing Sgt. S.W.Allen, RM
A few more photos are below:-