Lochaber holds Remembrance Sunday services

COMMANDO MEMORIAL 12/11/17 Serving Commandos pose at their Memorial. PICTURE IAIN FERGUSON, THE WRITE IMAGE

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Hundreds of people attended services in Lochaber at the weekend to commemorate Remembrance Sunday.

A huge crowd gathered on a cold, crisp November morning for the remembrance parade in Fort William.

The Lochaber Schools Pipe Band led the procession along the High Street and past the saluting platform, where the salute was taken by the lord lieutenant, Donald Cameron of Lochiel and the Highland Council’s area leader, councillor Andrew Baxter.

The parade continued on to the war memorial in the Parade where a number of wreaths were laid.  Local organisations, such as the Sea Cadets, Boys Brigade, The Red Cross and Police Scotland were all in attendance, as well as representatives of the Lochaber branch of the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service who laid a wreath for the first time in more than 20 years.

The parade finished at the Duncansburgh MacIntosh Church where the service took place.

Later on Sunday, veterans and members of the public were joined by  50 Royal Marines from Clyde-based 43 Commando Fleet Protection Group at the Commando Memorial, near Spean Bridge, for this year’s service.

Marching to the monument, set against the backdrop of the Nevis range, the Royal Marines were joined by Lochaber Schools Pipe Band, the Royal British Legion Scotland and members of the Commando Veterans Association.

Leading the service were reverends Richard Baxter and Morag Muirhead, who read from Psalm 45. There was also a reading of the Commando Prayer of St Ignatius, which was used by the Special Service Group war.

Laying a wreath on behalf of 43 Commando was commanding officer of the unit, colonel Tony de Reya, while regimental sergeant major warrant officer 1 Al Sullivan read from the Role of Honour.

Also attending were Commandos from the Second World War, including 95-year-old Jack Lamb who served with 3 Commando during the D-Day landings and Ted Owen, 95, who served with 46 Commando.

A new plaque was also unveiled at the Commando Memorial, the first to recognise Army Commando Engineers who lost their lives in the Falklands War in 1983, with five individuals from the Royal Engineers who died in the conflict named on the subscription.

The Commando Monument is situated on the training ground of the early Commandos near Achnacarry estate, dedicated to the men of the original British Commando Forces raised during the Second World War.

Unveiled in 1953 by the Queen Mother, the Category A listed bronze sculpture, designed by Scott Sutherland, overlooks the training areas of the Commando Training Depot established in 1942 at Achnacarry Castle.

PICS:

Councillor Andrew Baxter and Lochaber MSP Kate Forbes lay wreaths at the memorial in Fort William. IF F46 Remembrance Fort 09. Photo: Iain Ferguson, the Write Image.

Drew Armitage Walker, from Kinlochleven, at the Remembrance Parade in Fort William on Sunday. IF F46 Remembrance Fort 01. Photo: Iain Ferguson, the Write Image.

Ordinary cadet Cameron Campbell and ordinary cadet Finlay Dempster laid a wreath on behalf of the Sea Cadets. IF F46 Remembrance Fort 04. Photo: Iain Ferguson, the Write Image.

Robbie MacKay lays a wreath on behalf of the British Red Cross. IF F46 Remembrance Fort 06. Photo: Iain Ferguson, the Write Image.

Jack Lamb, 95, former memebr of 3 Commando attended the parade in Fort William just a week after attending a memorial in Normandy. IF F46 Remembrance Fort 07. Photo: Iain Ferguson, the Write Image.

Boys Brigade also marched at the Remembrance parade in Fort William. IF F46 Remembrance Fort 05. Photo: Iain Ferguson, the Write Image.

l-r: Pat McElhinney, with Raymond King and Colin McAndrew from the Lochaber branch of the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service. IF F46 Remembrance Fort 02. Photo: Iain Ferguson, the Write Image.

Mark McCann of the Legion marked his 50th Remembrance day Parade in Fort William on Sunday. IF F46 Remembrance Fort 10. Photo: Iain Ferguson, the Write Image.

Serving Commandos stand at their memorial. IF F46 Remembrance Spean 07. Photo: Iain Ferguson, the Write Image.

Wreath layers of four different Commando Units salute their memorial. IF F46 Remembrance Spean 05. Photo: Iain Ferguson, the Write Image.

The sun sets over the Commando Memorial. IF F46 Remembrance Spean 08. Photo: Iain Ferguson, the Write Image.

The Remembrance service at the Commando Memorial was well attended. IF F46 Remembrance Spean 01. Photo: Iain Ferguson, the Write Image.

Hundreds of people attended the service at the Commando Memorial. IF F46 Remembrance Spean 02. Photo: Iain Ferguson, the Write Image.

Snow on the hills above the Commando Memorial provided a stunning backdrop to the service. IF F46 Remembrance Spean 03. Photo: Iain Ferguson, the Write Image.