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Jeremy Walker Remembrance 2020

Pupils and staff at St Peter’s School, York, gathered as a whole school community for the first time in eight months this morning to mark Remembrance Day.   

The St Peter’s School community usually gathers in the Chapel for a special service of Remembrance, but today’s commemoration was held outside to enable pupils and staff to observe social distancing guidelines.  

The service was conducted on one of the school’s sports pitches before afternoon games, with readings and prayers delivered from the embankment in front of The Pavilion.  

Each year group bubble was arranged into zones, with pupils standing in rows of 10. 

The service, which lasted just 10 minutes, included an Address from Head Master Jeremy Walker, Readings from pupils Henry and Percy, a Two Minutes’ Silence at 11am, followed by the Last Post and Reveille played by Josh. Ed, Head of CCF, was this year's standard bearer and the service concluded with a Blessing from School Chaplain Rev’d Daniel Jones.  

There were no hymns or laying of poppies this year, but pupils and staff alike were grateful for the opportunity to pay their respects as a whole school community after spending much of the year apart. 

Mr Jeremy Walker, Head Master of St Peter’s School, said: “This morning marks a significant moment in the life of our school as we come together, along with the whole nation, to observe the act of remembrance. It is significant also, because it is the first time that we have gathered as a whole school community in the same place for eight months, possibly the longest period in the long history of our school.

"As we come together this morning, we think first of our school and those former pupils who served their country and gave up their lives in sacrifice for others. We remember especially those pupils who died in the First and Second World Wars and who are remembered in the wooden crosses at the front of school. We then go wider in our remembrance to think of those who have lost their lives in more recent conflicts such as the Falklands, Kosovo, Bosnia, Iraq, Afghanistan and on active service elsewhere.

"We also remember women and men of all nations across the world who have suffered and died as a result of war.

"As we carry out this act of remembrance we  join with the nation and the world in a commitment to peace and an end to conflict. In doing so we return from thinking of the wider world and come back to our gathered school community here today, because the path to peace and the end of conflict begins with the individual commitment of each and everyone of us to remember the past and in so doing turn our hearts and minds to the future."