Gallery: Suffolk parade honours Battle of Britain

PROUD veterans marked the 70th anniversary of the Battle of Britain with a parade through the streets of a Suffolk town.

The Sudbury branch of the Royal Air Force Association marched from the town’s Market Hill to a special service at St Gregory’s Church yesterday.

Branch chairman Ray Smith said it was important to honour the sacrifice of the young men who fought bravely for Britain’s skies in 1940.

“The Battle of Britain was our finest hour,” he said. “It is something we must never forget. If those young men hadn’t fought for us we might not be here today.”

Traffic was stopped and the streets fell quiet as the procession made its way to the service, led by Air Marshall Sir John Kambell.

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Onlookers watched as young members of the Sudbury Air Training Corps and the Stowmarket Marching Band marched to commemorate the decisive turning point in the Second World War.

“It is wonderful to see so many people turn out to support us,” Mr Smith said. “A lot of them have lost relatives in the war themselves so they don’t forget.”

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The Last Post was played and a wreath was laid at the memorial outside the church.

A traditional tea was served by members of the Women’s Royal Voluntary Service at a reception at the town hall after the service.

Sudbury mayor Peter Goodchild took part in the parade to mark the anniversary of ferocious fighting between July 10 and October 31, 1940.

“It is important we celebrate the Battle of Britain,” he said. “It is only proper we should support them.”

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