During his first visit to troops in Afghanistan, the Rt Hon Philip Hammond MP, Secretary of State for Defence, led tributes to the fallen at an Armistice Day parade held at Camp Bastion, Afghanistan.
Conditions were clear and sunny and the service was attended by UK Tri-service and Coalition personnel, as well as civilian contractors, MOD personnel and other civilian staff working at the Camp.
Among other VIPs were Lt Gen JJC Bucknall CBE Late COLDM GDS laid a wreath representing all fallen British and Commonwealth personnel. Comd JFSp(A) Cmdre CL Walker RN, DComd RC(SW), Brig N Welch OBE Late RGBWLI and Comd BSN, Gp Capt C D Da’Silva MA RAF lay wreaths on behalf of the three services.
Senior Padre, Lt Col CA Maynard RAChD, officiated over the service which started at 1045. A bugler from 2 Rifles played Last Post as all Officers and Warrant Officers saluted. At 1100 a 105mm light gun from the Joint Fires Group fired one round marking the start of the 2 - minutes silence and again to end it. The bugler played Reveille.
The parade was marshalled by the WO1 (GSM) DJ Edkins REME who recited The Kohima Epitah:
‘When you go home, tell them of us and say,
For your tomorrow we gave our today’
Later after the lesson, address and prayers given by the Senior Chaplain the GSM recited the famous lines from Laurence Binyons poem:
They shall grow not old as we that are left grow old.
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn;
at the going down of the sun, and in the morning,
we will remember them.
The Band of The Royal Regiment of Scotland under Director of Music SCOTS band Capt PA Collis-Smith played the music during the service.