Special invitation for people of Royal Borough

Special invitation for people of Royal Borough

Precious artefacts from World War One, donated from families and institutions all across the globe, are to be blessed at a special service before they are buried at the feet of the national War Horse Memorial in Ascot in June.

Residents of the Royal Borough are invited to join representatives from dozens of military and charitable organisations at a Service of Blessing at Holy Trinity Parish and Garrison Church, Windsor, on Tuesday, April 17, 2018.

More than 60 artefacts have been donated and include personal medals, coins and letters, as well as an authenticated hoof from the Second Battle of Ypres, April 5, 1915, barbed wire from ‘No Man’s Land’ and gravel from below the train carriage at Compiegne in France where the Armistice was signed in November 1918. They will be placed in an authentic brass shell casing discovered on the Somme, and locked away in a special air and watertight chamber.

The hour-long service will include readings by the Mayor, Councillor John Lenton and Major Brian Rogers, Officer Commanding the Household Cavalry Training Wing; a recital by Eton and Windsor Choral Society and performances by international soprano Friederike Krum and tenor and soldier Gary Chilton. And, the public will have the first chance to hear the enigmatic Elegy to the War Horse, specially composed for the project by Major Craig Hallatt, CAMUS, Director of Music & Officer Commanding The Band of The Household Cavalry.

The War Horse Memorial, which will take pride of place on Heatherwood Roundabout, in Ascot, consists of a larger than life bronze horse standing on an inscribed stone plinth and has been created by the British sculptor Susan Leyland. Work to complete the giant monument is underway in Inverness, in Scotland and will be transported in time for its unveiling on June 8, 2018.

Alan Carr MBE, Chief Executive and co-founder says it will be the first national memorial dedicated exclusively to the millions of UK, Allied and Commonwealth horses, mules and donkeys lost during The Great War.

He explains: “It will pay tribute to the nobility, courage, unyielding loyalty and immeasurable contribution these animals played in giving us the freedom of democracy we all enjoy today. Our Service of Blessing will be a wonderful opportunity to meet and thank those people who have offered artefacts – many of which have been in families for generations – and welcome the people of the Royal Borough to share the occasion with us. We expect there to be a wide take up and seats are limited so we will have to accept residents on a first come, first served basis.

For more information please contact Susan Osborne, Director of Communications, War Horse Memorial CIC on 07836 229208

Guests are asked to arrive by 1.45pm for the 2pm service. Anyone wishing to reserve a place should email alan@thewarhorsememorial.org

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