Across the country, at 11am on the 11th November, people stopped and stood in silence to remember all those who have given their lives for their country. For students and staff of Saint Paul’s Catholic School, Leicester, they felt it important to acknowledge this special day in a slightly different way. On the day, a range of people from across the school community including governors, staff and students, proudly wore their uniform into school as part of a series of events across remembrance day. They represented cadets from 1461 (Wigston) Squadron and 2502 (Hamilton) Squadron and staff from South and East Midlands Wing including Flying Officer Daniel McGlynn RAFVRT, Officer in Charge, 1279 (Melton Mowbray) Squadron and Squadron Leader Adrian Utting RAFVRT, Wing Staff Officer. They were also joined in school by students in uniform from various companies of the Army Cadet Force.
During the day, the cadets sold poppies in aid of the Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal, took part in a service of remembrance at the local village memorial as well as an act of remembrance within school, ran an assembly about the importance of remembrance day and ran an information stand about the opportunities available to young people offered by the cadet forces. The cadets who attended the local memorial proudly and smartly took part by reading the poem ‘In Flanders Field’ as well as reading the lists of those from the local community who had lost their lives in both World Wars. The service was led by Reverend Anthony Lees-Smith, who is not only the local vicar but also the Padre for 2502 (Hamilton) Squadron.
Cadet Corporal Brynley O’Malley, aged 15, commented, “It was a really good day and I felt very proud to be in my uniform on armistice day. I was lucky enough to be at the local memorial at 11am and it was special to be involved in the service and honour the fallen alongside people from the local community but also my school friends. This day marks a big event from the past and the memories should live on so I was grateful to be involved.”
Mr Neil Lockyer, Headteacher at Saint Paul’s School, remarked, “For students and staff alike, it was an opportunity for us to reflect on the many successes of the cadets programmes, and to understand how the skills they develop help young people in their lives. Poignantly, some of our uniformed students led the tributes after the minute’s silence both here in school and in the community act of remembrance in Evington, something we felt very proud and privileged to be part of.”
Flying Officer Daniel McGlynn RAFVRT
1279 (Melton Mowbray) Squadron