Published November 2, 2020 at 14:36
Following in depth meetings with Parade organisers, Rossendale Borough Council, the Police, Jake Berry MP and others, we regret to announce that, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there will be no Remembrance Parades in Rossendale this year. Also, due to the recently implemented ‘Rule of Six’, neither will there be any Remembrance Services around Cenotaphs in the Valley, as it would be unlawful to hold such Services.
On behalf of Parade Organisers for the five Parades throughout the Rossendale Valley, spokeswoman Dawn Taylor, Secretary to the Rawtenstall Remembrance Parade, said, “We were becoming more and more concerned about the possibility of the COVID-19 situation preventing us from holding our usual Parades. We held two meetings with Council members, the Police, our Member of Parliament and others who could help advise us and quickly came to the conclusion we all feared – it would not be possible.
“Our wonderful bands, who support us year on year, have been unable to practice and a socially distanced parade would be practically impossible to control anyway. At our last meeting, held two days after the ‘Rule of Six’ came in, it was agreed that it would be unlawful to hold even a socially distanced Remembrance Service around a Cenotaph, which was to be our Plan B.
We are profoundly disappointed that the parades in Bacup, Haslingden, Helmshore, Rawtenstall and Whitworth will not take place this year, but hope that we will be back in 2021.
The considerable cost of running a parade is met by volunteers, who not only organise the events, but also have to raise funds to run them. We feel that they are a nationally important event and, as such, hope to continue to recognise the sacrifice made by our sailors, soldiers and airmen to protect our homeland, in future years.”
In order to show our respect for the fallen on Remembrance Sunday we are proposing that, those who wish to, should don their uniform and medals (those medals of their forebears to be worn on the right), where appropriate, and stand outside their front door at 11am to observe a two minute silence.