To mark both Armistice Day and Remembrance Sunday this year, a poppy themed garden seat bench has been temporarily installed near the war memorial on Victoria Gardens.
Donated by 102-year-old veteran Mr Joe Morton who served with the Royal Army Service Corps and designed by metalwork specialist David Lockwood, the tribute offers a poignant reminder of those who have lost their lives serving in the armed forces during times of conflict. Another bench made by David and also kindly donated by Joe, will be placed in Morley as part of the commemorations.
Present to welcome the arrival of the seat bench to Victoria Gardens on Armistice Day today was Joe’s daughter, Mrs Cathy Nutton, veterans and the Lord Mayor of Leeds Councillor Gerry Harper, who will also be leading the Remembrance Sunday service on November 13.
As is tradition, a procession on Remembrance Sunday will leave Leeds Civic Hall at 10.50am and finish at Victoria Gardens where a number of wreaths will then be laid. This will follow ex-service men and women plus members of ex-service organisations and current serving military organisations gathering outside Leeds City Museum before marching to the war memorial at 10.30am.
Amongst those joining the Lord Mayor in the parade will be the High Sheriff of West Yorkshire Mr Chris Brown, and the leader of Leeds City Council, Councillor Judith Blake.
Led by the Right Reverend Nick Baines, Bishop of Leeds (CofE), the service will also be broadcast on two big screens around the war memorial to allow members of the public not at the front to watch the proceedings.
The Lord Mayor of Leeds Councillor Gerry Harper said:
“The donation of two poppy themed garden seat benches by Joe who is a 102-year-old veteran is a wonderful gesture, and we were very keen for one of the tributes to be placed on Victoria Gardens to mark both the Armistice Day and Remembrance Sunday services.
“The turnout from the people of Leeds to the Armistice Day service was as always tremendous, and I warmly invite members of the public to join me on Remembrance Sunday at Victoria Gardens.”