Women’s section closure ceremony held in Dickleburgh

The Standard was carried for the final time by Wendy Hall, the Branch Standard Bearer, escorted by t

The Standard was carried for the final time by Wendy Hall, the Branch Standard Bearer, escorted by the Deputy Standard Bearer, Tracy Chapman, the Branch Chairman, Joyce Hammond and the Standard of the Dickleburgh Branch of the RBL, carried by John Roberts. - Credit: Archant

A church service has marked the end of the women's section of a south Norfolk village's Royal British Legion branch.

Following the closure of the Dickleburgh branch of the Royal British Legion (RBL) Women's Section in July, the branch's standard was laid up in All Saints' Church at a morning service.

The closure of the women's branch was part of a controversy that will see more than half of RBL Women's Sections close in Norfolk.

Rosa Saunders, Florrie Everett, Eva Lockett and a Mrs Aldous founded the branch on October 8, 1925, and last year the branch celebrated its 90th anniversary with a dinner at the Park Hotel in Diss.

For the service the standard was carried for the final time by Wendy Hall, the branch standard bearer.


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She was escorted by the deputy standard bearer, Tracy Chapman and branch chairman, Joyce Hammond, with the standard of the Dickleburgh branch of the Royal British Legion carried by John Roberts.

The chairman, who was a member of the branch for 63 years, presented the women's standard to the chaplain of the Dickleburgh branch of the legion, the Rev Norman Steer, who laid it on the altar.

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Mr Steer spoke of the dedication of the members of the Dickleburgh branch of the women's section, past and present, in supporting the Royal British Legion's beneficiaries – those injured, wounded or suffering from mental health issues as a result of their service in the forces, and the families of those who lost their lives in the service of their country.

Members of the branch have re-formed into a new organisation, the Oxlip Group, independent of the Royal British Legion, and open to men and women.

It will meet monthly on the second Wednesday of the month at 2pm in the Church Rooms, Dickleburgh.

Fifteen of Norfolk's 27 branches have voted to fold after an announcement that the Women's Section would become a district of the RBL.

Are you fundraising for the RBL? Email anthony.carroll@archant.co.uk

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