They came to remember.And under slate grey skies in Barker’s Pool in Sheffield, hundreds gathered beside the war memorial to mark the anniversary of the World War I Armistice – signed 95 years ago.
On the stroke of 11am, on the 11th day of the 11th month, a lone bugler played the Last Post to herald the start of a perfectly observed silence.
With heads bowed and caps in hand they stood shoulder to shoulder.
Men, women, old and young, each paying their respects to those who had paid the supreme sacrifice.
The silence was broken by the playing of the Reveille and a reading of the familiar verse from For The Fallen by Robert Laurence: ‘They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old. Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn. At the going down of the sun and in the morning, We will remember them’.
Blood red poppy wreaths brought a splash of colour as they were laid at the foot of the war memorial. Tributes came from city leaders, the Chief Constable of South Yorkshire Police David Crompton, and the South Yorkshire Police Crime Commissioner Shaun Wright.
Other wreaths, from groups including the Girls Venture Corps of the Air Cadets, were placed alongside simple wooden crosses bearing names of the fallen.
Dennis P Atkins killed in 1918 in France; Albert Roberts who fell the same year; Tony Bale, KSLI, remembered in a tribute laid by his granddaughter Emma.
Among those who gathered in the rain was Bryan Curl, aged 75, formerly a cook in the Army Air Corps, who lives in Wincobank.
He said: “It is important to remember them. They looked after us, now I’m looking after them.”