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“Battle’s Over – A Nation’s Tribute”

Mere will be commemorating the centenary of the ending of World War 1 in a number of ways. There will be a Remembrance Day ceremony and service on Sunday 11th November. In the evening, as part of the nationwide “Battle’s Over – A Nation’s Tribute” commemorations co-ordinated by the Pageantmaster, beacons will be lit at 7.00p.m. around the country. We will be lighting a beacon on Castle Hill at 7.00p.m. The Chairman of the Town Council, John Jordan, will read “Tribute to the Millions” in Jubilee Gardens, just before the beacon is lit, at 6.50p.m., followed by playing of the Last Post at 6.55p.m. which will also be in Jubilee Gardens. After the beacon is lit, the Church bells will be rung from 7.05p.m. as part of the nationwide “Ring Out for Peace” church bell-ringing.
Mementoes to the 52 residents of Mere who lost their lives defending their country during the First World War have been sited around the town. These have been placed close to the part of Mere where the soldiers or their families lived, and a map will be available from the Library so that people can walk round the town and find them all. Also in the Library there is a book, ‘Our Proudest Uniform’, written by Angela McDonald for Mere museum, with more information about these soldiers.
We know that the mementoes to the soldiers have already generated much interest particularly amongst our younger residents and will help to put into context the tremendous sacrifice made by so many in that conflict. On 6th November, the mementoes will be moved to Jubilee Gardens.
The Town Council recently purchased an oak tree as part of the commemorations and this has been planted on the southern edge of the old cemetery in Angel Lane. A life size cut out of a WW1 soldier will be standing guard by the Centennial Oak.
Whilst particularly remembering those Mere residents, we do not forget the many millions killed or wounded in battle and those men and women on the home front who struggled amidst pain and loss to help ensure freedom survived. Many local businesses and individuals have contributed to a donation to the Royal British Legion, and there will be a prominent display of poppies in and around the town.