Children celebrate Anzac Day
Pupils lay flowers on graves to pay respect at annual commemoration
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