City Somme commemorations take place

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COMMEMORATIONS took place in Portsmouth to mark the centenary of the Battle of the Somme.

About 60 people attended a service held at Portsmouth Guildhall yesterday, including the Lord Mayor David Fuller, councillors, veterans, cadets, representatives from the armed forces and members of the public.

Bob Beech, on behalf of the Pompey Pals, opened the service, before the Anthem For Doomed Youth was read by Cadet Sgt Elizabeth Faulkner.

The Act of Remembrance was read by the Royal British Legion and bugler Kevin Jones played the Last Post prior to a two-minute silence being held.

A wreath was laid by the Lord Mayor and crosses laid by veterans in honour of people who lost their lives during the battle.

Former mayor and councillor Frank Jonas read an extract from a pocket diary of a Somme soldier.

Cllr Fuller said: ‘It is very important that we don’t forget. People lost their lives so that we can be free.

‘It is important that we do not forget that without the sacrifices these people and their families made, we wouldn’t be in the free society that we are today.’