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On Sunday 9 November, St John’s held its annual Service of Remembrance in the School Chapel. This year focused particularly on commemorating the outbreak of the First World War one hundred years ago.
The School welcomed the Venerable Alan Jeans, Archdeacon of Sarum in the Salisbury Diocese, as guest preacher to the Service. After solo recitals, prayers and a sermon from the Archdeacon, The Last Post was sounded in the Chapel, marking the start of a two-minute silence. Following the silence was a rendition of the National Anthem, in remembrance and respect of the number of Old Johnians who made the ultimate sacrifice in the War.
The School Captain, Thomas Gardner (Montgomery House), placed a wreath of poppies at the School’s War Memorial, followed by the Headmaster, a Governor of the School and NCOs of the Royal Navy, Army and Royal Air Force.
The School also held a short service on the morning of Armistice Day, where pupils, staff and Old Johnians congregated around the Quad in remembrance. The School Chaplain, Rev. Sarah Wood-Roe, prayed on behalf of St John’s, and read the Act of Remembrance.
The Last Post was again sounded, signalling 11am on the 11th day of the 11th month, and the School fell silent for two minutes, remembering the fallen and reflecting on the humility of war. This was followed by the placing of further wreaths on the restored War Memorial in the centre of the Quad.
A number of Old Johnians remained at the School after the service, for a day of reunion and reflection. The chance to catch up with contemporaries and reminisce about school days past brought some joy to those reflecting on the solemn occasion.
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