Armistice 100: Tributes to First World War men who died at Fairlop
- Credit: Archant
More people died in Barkingside learning to fly then in combat with Zeppelins during the First World War.
The names of the 21 men who were killed were read out in a moving Armistice centenary memorial ceremony in Fairlop Waters Country Park, Forest Road, today (November 11).
The service, organised by Fairlop Heritage Group, was attended by the Mayor of Redbridge, councillors, MPs and a London Assembly Member.
A war veteran, scouting groups, member of the public and servicemen also came along to pay their respects.
Speaking at the ceremony the council leader, Councillor Jas Athwal said: “I would like to praise Fairlop Heritage Group for continuing the memory of these young flying men.
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“Men who were barely men - boys- who stood up not just for London but for the freedom of the world.
“Men who had hopes, dreams and aspirations like we do but they paid the ultimate price, the ultimate sacrifice so we can stand here as free individuals - we owe them so much.”
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Cllr Athwal said that his only hope is that a situation like this never happens again.
Patron of the Fairlop Heritage Group, Ilford North MP, Wes Streeting, said a “huge thank you” to all the volunteers for organising the ceremony and for raising awareness about local history.
“It is particularly poignant to remember, in our diverse borough, that people joined with us and fought with us on battlefields across Europe and joined us from right across the Commonwealth,” he said,
“One and a half million volunteered from India alone.
“Let us hope we never see a war on this scale.”
MP for Ilford South, Mike Gapes, Conservative Redbridge leader, Cllr Linda Huggett and Assembly Member Keith Prince, were among those who laid wreaths at a monument by Fairlop lake.
David Martin of Fairlop Heritage Group said: “Twenty-one people died here learning to fly.
“They lost more people learning to fly then in combat with Zeppelins.
“I would like to say thank you to Vision Redbridge Culture and Leisure, they have been very accommodating and without them, we couldn’t have done it (had a service).