Canadian Memorial Day Service

This annual event is organised by Canadian Roots UK, a non-profit charity established with the primary aim of helping Canadian War Children born in UK find their Fathers and Family in Canada. The Patrons of the charity are Dame Vera Lynn who was 102 in March of this year, as well as Cllr Michael Donin and Tim Loughton MP. The Organiser is Mrs Pam Vowles who lives in Goring by Sea. Although the weather forecast was largely dry with occasional showers, when we arrived there was a torrential ‘shower’ leaving us soaked to the skin. Fortunately, shortly after 1100 hours the weather did change and became dry and sunny.

In both the First and Second World Wars the Southern Counties of England became the base for the Armed Forces of many nations and in particular USA and Canada. During WW2 Worthing became a centre for Canadian troops preparing to take part in the D Day landings on 6th June 1944 at Juno Beach, and this year being the 75th anniversary there have been many events marking the occasion culminating in this Memorial Day Service held at the Canadian Memorial which is on the Worthing promenade opposite the bottom of Grand Avenue. Whilst the emphasis this year has been on D Day the sacrifices made by Canadians in both WW1 and WW2 are remembered at this time every year.

In 1916 Great Uncle William Gregory returned to the UK with the 25th Battalion Nova Scotia Rifles (Cape Breton Highlanders) and was based at Witley Camp in Surrey before seeing action on the Western Front in France.

Standard Bearer Jim Still, Cdr Corey Bursey Naval Advisor Canadian High Commission, Heidi Watkins