Long Wittenham remembered its First World War dead on 11th November at the village war memorial to commemorate Armistice Day 1918. Fourteen soldiers from the village lost their lives in war zones in France and Palestine or died from wounds.
Pupils from the Primary School took part in the ceremony. They read the names of the roll of honour and brief biographies of some of those named on the stone memorial. Small wooden crosses were laid in the grass surrounding the memorial.
The school’s acting head teacher, Gillian Seymour, said after the ceremony that it was important that the pupils honoured the sacrifice of soldiers who gave their lives for the freedoms we enjoy today and for future generations. Wreathes were laid by the chairman of the parish council Gordon Rogers, Cub and Brownie Scouts, and Janet Haylett on behalf of Wittenham WI.
The vicar, the Revd Canon Paul Wignall, presided at the ceremony. He said it was important to remember those soldiers who had given their lives to ensure freedom, and to work for reconciliation between nations.
The ceremony concluded with eighteen-year-old Sasha Cantor playing the Last Post on a cornet. Mrs Seymour recited the Kohima Epitaph: “When you go home tell them of us and say, for your tomorrow we gave our today”.
The men from Long Wittenham who lost their lives were: Percy Beckett, Charles Bidmead, Kenneth Bumpass, Alec Chambers, Alan Eason, Vincent Essex, Harry Green, William Wybrow-Hallwright, William Hermon, Thomas Hopkyns, Ernest Jeffries, Fred and Frank Lamboll and Frank Leston.