Chil­dren cel­e­brate An­zac Day

Pupils lay flow­ers on graves to pay re­spect at an­nual com­mem­o­ra­tion

Harefield Gazette - - NEWS - By Kather­ine Clementine kather­ine.clementine@trin­i­tymir­

HAREFIELD vil­lagers came to­gether to mark An­zac day, with an an­nual com­mem­o­ra­tion lay­ing flow­ers on war graves at St Mary’s Church.

A to­tal of 248 chil­dren from Harefield In­fants School walked to the church on Mon­day April 25, clutch­ing flow­ers in their hands to decorate the rest­ing place for 110 Aus­tralian ser­vice­men who fought in World War Two.

For 100 years the chil­dren of Harefield In­fant School have laid their flow­ers to pay their re­spects.

Fiona Hook, wel­fare of­fi­cer at Harefield In­fant School, said: “We were re­ally sur­prised this year when we were es­corted back from the church by two mounted po­lice of­fi­cers.

“The chil­dren were even more sur­prised when they rode into the play­ground.”

The 2nd Harefield Brown­ies laid a spe­cial wreath of knit­ted pop­pies, which was sent over from Mel­bourne, Aus­tralia, on be­half of the com­mu­nity of Al­tona.

Mayor of Hilling­don Ge­orge Cooper said: “A very mov­ing An­zac day ser­vice in Harefield. Lovely singing and flow­ers were laid by the chil­dren.”

About £600 was raised for the War Graves Com­mis­sion at a ‘Harefield says thank you’ fundrais­ing evening ahead of the church ser­vice, on Satur­day April 23.

The funds will help the com­mis­sion which had to clear up the graves twice in one year, af­ter van­dals des­e­crated the sa­cred memo­rial site.

Cllr Jane Palmer, ward coun­cil­lor for Harefield and a mem­ber of the com­mit­tee which ar­ranged the fundraiser, said: “I was at the An­zac ser­vice in the church with the mayor and var­i­ous dig­ni­taries in the vil­lage. Lots of vil­lagers came out as they al­ways do. It’s a very, very pos­i­tive vil­lage and Harefield are pas­sion­ate about looking af­ter their war graves.”

n MEMO­RIAL: A pupil from Harefield In­fant School at one of the war graves at St Mary’s Church

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