Members and supporters of the Royal British Legion participated in several Armistice Day services along the Costa del Sol last weekend. Remembrance parades and ceremonies took place from Malaga to Gibraltar, and also inland in Coín, Mollina and Loja.
The RBL Torremolinos and the Royal Air Force Association held their annual service at the St George's Anglican Church in Malaga. The service, which was attended by the British consul for Southern Spain and the Canary Islands, Charmaine Arbouin, was given by the Reverend Richard Frost, who quoted the words of WH Auden's Stop All The Clocks.
Following the church service, the Standard Bearer led the congregation to the four Commonwealth War graves, where the British consul laid the first wreath on behalf of Queen Elizabeth II. This was followed by the Act of Remembrance and the reading of In Flanders Fields, before the last post signalled the two-minute silence.
World War II veteran Charles Betty, 96, who attended the service proudly displaying medals he was awarded during WWII, as well as medals his father had received during WWI, explained to SUR in English the importance of remembering those who lost their lives in conflict.
"I am here today to honour our colleagues who died during two world wars and those who have lost their lives since 1945. It is extremely important to remember them as they gave their lives so we can be free."
Ex-military personnel and the families of those who served, and those who still serve, gathered at the Salon Varietés Theatre in Fuengirola for a service led by President of the RBL Southern Spain District Neal Toplis. The 1st Fuengirola Scout Group took part in the parade, along with senior members and standards from Mijas Costa and the recently reformed Benalmádena branch.
Two donations totalling 1,000 euros boosted the RBL's poppy appeal and added an extra special touch to the proceedings, as the president pointed out.
"It has been another extremely successful Remembrance Day and two generous donations made the day extra special."
Several members of the Mollina branch of the RBL travelled to Gibraltar on Sunday to take part in the Governor's Parade, while others joined forces with the Loja branch and the Salinas Anglican Congregation for a remembrance service conducted by Reverend Doreen Cage.
The main service and wreath laying at the branch's pop-up memorial in Parque La Viña on Monday was attended by more than 100 people, including representatives from Mollina town hall.