Drumhead Service to commemorate Worcestershire World War 100Published: Saturday, 15th September 2018
World War 100 commemorated in an Act of Remembrance and Drumhead service at Gheluvelt Park in Worcester.
Welcome from Lt Col Patrick Holcroft LVO OBE
Lord-Lieutenant of Worcestershire,
It gives me great pleasure to welcome you to what will be a poignant act of remembrance to mark the final year of the World War One Centenary.
Today's event takes its lead from the annual Royal British Legion Festival of Remembrance that takes place every year in the Albert Hall and we have invited civic leaders, military organisations, the emergency services, interfaith groups and youth organisations from across the County. Today we will remember those who fell fighting for their country and their county (which at the time included Stourbridge and Dudley). The presence of the Bishop of Dudley draws our attention to that wider community.
A Drumhead Service is a church service conducted "in the field" during armed conflict, often near the battlefront. During World War One Drumhead services were held in the trenches and in public parks in Britain. The altar of a traditional service is replaced by a stack of drums covered by the Colours of the Regiment. On this occasion, the Colours of the 4th Battalion, The Mercian Regiment will be crossed on the drum stack together with the Union Flag and the County Standard of the Royal British Legion.
Holding this service in this memorial park which honours those who bravely fought and lost their lives, is a fitting way for the county to meet together in a joint commemoration service without impinging on services held on Remembrance Sunday itself.
I am particularly pleased to welcome the band of the Grenadier Guards to accompany our service. The Grenadier Guards was formed in 1656 and its band in 1685. It has provided musical support to many state occasions, national and international events and the Regiment in peace and war. The Colours of the Regiment's 2nd Battalion are laid up in Worcester Cathedral and The Regiment enjoys the Freedom of the City of Worcester.