Frank Ross, the Right Honourable Lord Provost of the City of Edinburgh, was joined by First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and fellow politicians, as well as members of the Armed Forces community, for a ceremony at the Stone of Remembrance to mark Remembrance Sunday today (November 12th).
More than 100 wreaths were laid at the poignant service, organised by Legion Scotland at the City Chambers, to remember those who have fallen in conflicts. Sir Alistair Irwin KCB CBE, the President of Legion Scotland and Poppyscotland, read Binyon’s Lines after the bugler had played the Last Post.
One of the wreath-layers attending the service was Anne Blair, whose husband Lieutenant-Colonel David Blair was killed along with 17 other soldiers when the IRA blew up an army convoy in August 1979. At the time of his death, Lt Col Blair was commanding officer of the 1st Battalion, The Queen’s Own Highlanders, at Warrenpoint, Northern Ireland. The attack on his battalion took place just hours after The Queen’s cousin, Lord Mountbatten, was killed.
Mrs Blair, who lives in Edinburgh, said: “It is a terrific honour for me to have been asked to lay a wreath on behalf of the War Widows Association of Great Britain. I was hugely honoured to do it on what is a great occasion.”
Seventy-four-year-old Mrs Blair, who was just 36 when her husband was murdered, added: “I support Poppyscotland like mad and I have an enormous poppy on my car. In fact, it’s too large to take off, so I leave it on all year round! Once a year, I visit the Lady Haig Poppy Factory and I am given three crosses which I place on my husband’s grave.”
Alan Colley, Treasurer of the Boys’ Brigade Edinburgh, Leith & District Battalion, which served as wreath-bearers for the Lord Provost’s party, said: “The Battalion is privileged this year to again be part of the Legion Scotland service. The Boys’ Brigade Battalion in Edinburgh – now Edinburgh, Leith & District Batt – was very involved in both the First and Second World Wars, as were other battalions throughout Scotland, and they were always to the fore in helping in so many ways at home while so many were away fighting for their country.”
Notes to editors
- For further information please contact David A. Findlay, PR Manager at Legion Scotland / Poppyscotland, on 0131 550 1580 or 079797 35611; email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Legion Scotland is the daily use name of the Royal British Legion Scotland, the largest ex-service membership charity in Scotland working at the heart of the community supporting veterans of all ages and from all conflicts. With nearly 165 branches, 65 clubs and more than 30,000 members, Legion Scotland, working in partnership with other organisations, provides veterans in the community with three key services covering remembrance, comradeship and befriending whilst supporting the welfare services and fundraising initiatives of Poppyscotland. Contact Legion Scotland at New Haig House, Logie Green Road, Edinburgh, EH7 4HQ, or telephone 0131 550 1586. For more information on Legion Scotland’s work, please visit: legionscotland.org.uk.
- Poppyscotland provides life-changing support to the Armed Forces community. Money raised from the Scottish Poppy Appeal and Poppyscotland’s year-round fundraising enables them to deliver support to members of the Armed Forces community in Scotland by providing tailored funding and assistance. The charity also funds services in advice, employment, housing, mental health, mobility and respite. Please note that we are known as “Poppyscotland”, and not “PoppyScotland” or “Poppy Scotland”. For more information, please visit us at: poppyscotland.org.uk.