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'Dignified closure' planned for Easton-on-the-Hill Collyweston Royal British Legion planned this weekend

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A ‘dignified closing of the chapter’ is planned on Sunday (June 30) for the Easton-on-the-Hill Collyweston and District Branch of the Royal British Legion.

After almost a century the flag will be lowered for the last time and placed in All Saints Church for permanent display.

The sad move follows the chapter suffering dwindling membership, with the group having only five.

Nigel Barrett of the Royal British Legion. (12699672)
Nigel Barrett of the Royal British Legion. (12699672)

Branch member James Mason called the formal winding up of the group and the ‘laying up’ of the branch standard (or flag) “a bit sad” but a “dignified closing of the chapter was planned.”

On Sunday June 30, branch members, plus other standard or flag bearers from around the area will gather at the Easton-on-the-Hill war memorial at 10.30am for a final procession down Church Street to All Saints Church for a special ceremony, which will celebrate the work of the branch over many decades.

James said the branch existed since the 1920s, helped by links to RAF Wittering.

In recent years, the branch ran events to mark the centenary of World War 1. They included a large service in November with Stamford Brass, an exhibition in the village hall, and a wartime supper dinner dance, which meant the branch could pass on £6,000 to the Royal British Legion.

James continued: “The standard has had a fitting end. It has just been in Normandy with the veterans and our standard bearer Nigel Barrett. It was the escort standard to a veteran in his 90s.”

But branch membership diminished making the branch no longer viable, with members feeling that laying the flag in the church was a dignified end.

James added: “We don’t it want to be a sad occasion. Realistically, the branch has run its course. It’s had a proud history. It’s time to put the standard in the church so everybody can see it forever.”

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