Picture Gallery: General The Lord Richard Dannatt attends ANZAC memorial service and parade in Southwold

General The Lord Richard Dannatt joined a heartfelt memorial in Southwold to honour the thousands of soldiers who sacrificed their lives during a tragic campaign in military history.

Civic dignitaries, military leaders and representatives from across the globe took part in a parade and service to mark ANZAC day - a commemoration of the British, Australian, New Zealand, and Turkish soldiers who fought and died in Gallipoli, Turkey, 1915.

On a bleak and wind-swept Sunday, the rain finally stopped as the Southwold and Reydon Corps of Drums led a musical procession down the high street featuring standards and representatives of Royal British Legion branches, community figure heads, and 10 mayors from across East Anglia.

And as their footsteps thudded past the United Reform Church, they received a salute from Deputy Lord Lt Major Philip Hope-Cobbold who was accompanied by General The Lord Dannatt, Suffolk High Sheriff Andrew Norman Butler, the mayor of Southwold John Windell, Suffolk Coastal MP Therese Coffey, and officials representing the Turkish Embassy, and the Australian and New Zealand High Commissions.

But the poignant reminder of that brutal day was not felt until hundreds of people filed into St Edmunds Church for readings, hymns, and a wreath-laying ceremony led by Rev Simon Pitcher.


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In an address by General The Lord Dannatt, the former head of the British Army, he described the sorrow of those soldiers who arrived on that day 'full of hope in their hearts and confident in themselves, as they landed in the grey dawn to do their duty.'

He said: 'After some of the fiercest fighting of the first world war, and nine months later, the Allied Expeditionary Force abandoned the Gallipoli Penninsula and over 120,000 soldiers lay dead on the battlefields or in hastily dug cemeteries, of these, 80,000 were Turkish, 44,000 were from the British Empire and France, including just over 8,500 Australian and some 2,721 New Zealand soldiers.

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'From that cauldron of conflict, Kemal Ataturk emerged as the leader of the modern Turkish State and both Australia and New Zealand forged proud new identities.

'The Gallipoli campaign was a story of the heroism of the individual soldier - the Turkish 'Johnny', the Australian 'Digger' and the British 'Tommy'.

Bugle call, The Last Post, sounded the end of the service where representatives of the British Legion lowered their standards before national anthems were sung by the congregation.'

An informal gathering was held after the service at St Edmunds Hall where tea and ANZAC biscuits were served. The official Anzac day is held on April 25.

To view more pictures of ANZAC day click on the link in the top right hand corner of the page.

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