Royal British Legion marks centenary with poignant cathedral service

Ken Rowbottom, Suffolk RBL chairman, and Clare, Countess of Euston, with branch standard bearers

Ken Rowbottom, Suffolk RBL chairman, and Clare, Countess of Euston, Lord Lieutenant of Suffolk, with branch standard bearers. Mr Rowbottom is wearing his Terai hat, having served as an officer in the Gurkha Regiment. - Credit: Emily-Jane Chivers

The Royal British Legion in Suffolk celebrated its centenary on Sunday, September 19, with an evensong service in the Cathedral of St Edmundsbury.  

The county's RBL was founded in May 1921, the same month that the organisation launched nationally, but the service was held in September due to Covid-19.

Suffolk RBL standard bearers at the centenary service

Suffolk RBL branch standard bearers with, from left, the Right Rev Martin Seeley, Bishop of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich, Ken Rowbottom, Suffolk RBL chairman; Clare, Countess of Euston, Lord Lieutenant of Suffolk and Jamie Lowther-Pinkerton, president of The Royal British Legion Suffolk. - Credit: Emily-Jane Chivers

The Right Rev Martin Seeley, Bishop of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich, led the service and gave the address, with RBL branch standards and more than 170 guests.

Guests at the service in Bury St Edmunds included the Countess of Euston,  Lord Lieutenant of Suffolk, Edward Creasy, High Sheriff of Suffolk, Joe Falzon, national vice-chairman of the RBL, Jamie Lowther-Pinkerton, president of Suffolk RBL and Kenneth Rowbottom, chairman of Suffolk RBL.

Suffolk RBL county standard bearer Alf Bloomfield leading the branch standards out of the cathedral

Suffolk RBL county standard bearer Alf Bloomfield leading the branch standards out of the cathedral - Credit: Emily-Jane Chivers

There were also military representatives from the Royal Navy, Army and Royal Air Force, veterans and cadet forces.

Jamie Lowther-Pinkerton said: “For a century, our members and volunteers have worked tirelessly in the service of others, supporting our veterans and their families in need, as well as those still serving.”

The Right Rev Martin Seeley, Bishop of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich, speaking with Clare, Countess of Euston

The Right Rev Martin Seeley, Bishop of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich, speaking with Clare, Countess of Euston after the RBL centenary service - Credit: Emily-Jane Chivers

The High Sheriff of Suffolk, Edward Creasy, speaking with the Right Rev Martin Seeley, Bishop of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich

The High Sheriff of Suffolk, Edward Creasy, speaking with the Right Rev Martin Seeley, Bishop of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich - Credit: Emily-Jane Chivers


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