Mick Luke- President Section UK reports
Over 500 people gathered, some with Standards at ‘The Carry’, at the National Memorial Arboretum on Sunday 21st August 2016 to dedicate the new Cyprus Memorial.
The large piece of rock from the Troodos Mountains in Cyprus had been airlifted back to the UK by the RAF. The insertions on the Memorial, gave names and details of all those that lost their lives, both the British Serviceman and Police Officers which is the first time in history a memorial has been jointly dedicated in this manner.
On a blustery day with both rain and sunshine appearing overhead during the service, it was very moving for Sara and I to see a mixture of armed services veterans, serving and retired police officers, relatives and families of those that had served in Cyprus and dignitaries to commemorate the losses.
The service was conducted jointly by the Rev Canon David Wilbraham, the National Police chaplain and Rev. Alan Bowley. The Memorial was unveiled by Air Chief Marshal Sir Michael Graydon GCB, CBE with enormous credit going to David Littlemore who gave the opening address and was the instigator in making the Memorial happen
Wreaths were laid and I was very honoured as President to represent Section UK in laying a wreath to those that had made the supreme sacrifice.
The Police Roll of Honour Trust (our National IPA Charity) similarly played a huge part in the event and the Chairman Sidney Mackay laid a wreath on their behalf and after the service Sara and I had chance to catch up with him and Steve Lloyd, the Trust Manager who was also the standard bearer during the service carrying the British Cyprus Colonial Police Standard.
Whilst reflecting on the achievements of making this Memorial reality it was apparent that the Trust work is never ending and the support from the IPA both in terms of donations and help will be gratefully received.
I asked Steve Lloyd to keep me informed as to other memorials that maybe dedicated in the future so that the IPA could be present at them.
President of IPA UK Mick Luke with Steve Loyd the Trust Manager, a Veteran and the Memorial designer
The Trust relies on donations and volunteers to undertake their work and I would urge you to read up on the Charity on their website.
This event had been advertised on Section UK’s website and it was good to see a number of local IPA members in the crowd showing their support and respects.
A very moving service which ended “We will remember them”
All the pictures from the memorial Service can be seen on the Gallery in the News Section