Sunderland to remember all those who served in Northern Ireland
Sunderland is set to host commemorative events to remember all those who served in Northern Ireland.
This year is the 50th anniversary of 'Operation Banner' which began on 14 August 1969, when British troops were first deployed onto the streets of Northern Ireland in response to growing sectarian unrest.
Operation Banner lasted almost 38 years between August 14, 1969, and July 31, 2007 and saw more than 300,000 members of the UK Armed Forces deployed.
During that time, 1441 serving personnel died on deployment or in related paramilitary acts.
On Saturday, August 17, the Mayor of Sunderland, Coun David Snowdon, will be joined by the Mayoress, Coun Dianne Snowdon, and civic guests including Colonel Ann Clouston, (Retired) OBE, ARRC, TD, DL, VR, and the Mayors of Hetton, Peterlee, South Tyneside, Shildon, Hartlepool and Barnard Castle at the Cenotaph, on Burdon Road, for a commemorative service and ceremonial laying of wreaths in memory of all those who lost their lives.
The parade will be brought to attention at 10.50am, after which the Mayor, Coun David Snowdon will give a welcome speech before the service begins.
The reading of a poem at 10.55am will be followed by the raising of Standards, sounding of the Last Post and two minutes silence beginning at 11am.
There will then be a roll-call of those who lost their lives serving during Operation Banner, and the ceremonial laying wreaths at the Cenotaph before the parade is dismissed at 11.15am, with all those present then invited to the Gunners Club in nearby Mary Street for refreshments.
The service is among a series of commemorative events to mark the anniversary being organised by veteran's groups, including those from the Gunners Club in the city centre and Veterans in Crisis.
The Mayor of Sunderland, Coun David Snowdon said: "Many service people and their families from across our community will have their own memories of Operation Banner, and this is our opportunity to show our appreciation of their efforts on all our behalf."