I didn’t make it to the dawn ceremony at the Cenotaph this morning, but from what I can see of the photos, it looked misty, moody, and memorable. However, nothing could stop me from turning up to our own local commemoration, which was at the very reasonable hour of 9:30(ish) and I wandered past the RSA at 8:30 just to see what was happening. The chairs were all out in expectation, and in the distance a faint whisper of the pipe band could be heard, as they warmed up.
The day had started in a shimmering blue kind of way, and my hopes were high for a dry parade, but as the time approached an ominous dark grey loomed over the horizon and I scurried home for my coat getting lightly rained on as I did so.
By the time I was bustling up the road to join the crowd at around 9:30, it was overcast but stayed dry, and I could hear the pipes from way off, getting into full throat. (You might guess that a major pull for me, is anything Scottish!)
How nice to see such a good community turn out for this remembrance service. We were a little baffled as to the route, but people readjusted position as it became apparent the march would leave from the Community House, turn at the roundabout and go directly down to the RSA. I positioned myself on a traffic island at that corner and got a great view of the proceedings.
On a personal note, both grandfather’s were in WWI fighting in the Aussie army, and I lost two Great Uncles to that same war. I am impressed that, if anything, the commemoration of our ANZACs is picking up in dedication rather than the reverse.
I saw Phil Twyford MP walk past with his wreath to be laid, and a small gathering of VIPs ready to participate in the coming service, and waiting as the march began.
It was over pretty quickly, but we clapped the Returned Servicemen who followed the pipe band, and the small clusters representing Army/Airforce, Police, Fire, Ambulance that followed them. A great turn out and makes me proud to be part of the local community.
The service to follow took place in front of the RSA in Jack Pringle Village Green, with some hymns, and speeches, and a quiet reflection felt in the crowd surrounding the event. I tried to photograph the pipe band before they broke up, but missed all but this great duo – twins – who posed for the shot.
I took a video of the march, (below). Very glad the rain held off, and that the Anzac Parade and Service was so well attended.