Newham remembers the fallen war heroes

Schoolchildren, residents, Royal British Legion and the battlion stand in silence

Schoolchildren, residents, Royal British Legion and the battlion stand in silence - Credit: Archant

Silence fell at one of the borough’s war memorials this morning as hundreds turned out to pay their respects to those who have died in conflict.

Poppy-wearing pensioners, Royal British Legion members and solemn school children were among those marking Remembrance Day at the cenotaph, in Central Park, East Ham.

Crowds circled the memorial to remember the fallen with speeches and singing.

Lee Flitcroft, captain of 7th Battalion The Rifles, who are based at the Army Reserve Centre in West Ham, said: “It’s always a pleasure to come as the local military unit.

“It’s great to see the kids and interact with them, as they’re always interested and well behaved.

Wreaths laid at the East Ham cenotaph

Wreaths laid at the East Ham cenotaph - Credit: Archant

“It’s an absolute must and we must continue to honour and respect the fallen.”

Children from a variety of schools including St Bonaventure’s, in Forest Gate and St Edward’s Primary School, in Upton Park, were among those who honoured the dead by laying a number of wreaths at the war memorial.

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Bob Spencer, chairman of the East Ham and District branch of the Royal British Legion, said: “The children do very, very well, they’re well educated now or more so than 10 to 15 years ago, as they seem to be learning about more and respect a lot more.

“It’s nice to remember and they should learn that it is their fathers and grandfathers who fought in the war.”

Residents also attended in numbers to respect their lost loved ones and all those who lost their lives fighting for their country.

One onlooker, Elizabeth Crumlish, 86, of East Ham, said: “It’s not to celebrate war as some people think, it’s to thank those that have sacrificed so much for us to live and also to remember the families they left behind because war causes a knock on effect.

“My family lost no one in the First World War, but my uncle came back from the trenches with tuberculosis, which he passed on to his wife and children.”