Monday, December 06, 2010

Duke of Lancaster Regiment - Blackburn Homecoming

This was a march with a difference. Freezing cold, snow, delayed for an hour. But there were still thousands of people lining the streets to see the Duke of Lancaster Regiment's Homecoming parade.

I was staggered at how many people turned up. The town was rammed. The parade was delayed by over an hour because the regiment was delayed by the poor road conditions. Many people took had taken up their positions two hours before the parade started.

There was an atmosphere of pride and euphoria. It was far removed from the EDl march I witnessed in Preston a few days earlier (though EDL supporters and flags were here).

But anti-Taliban chants apart, this was not about muslims, racism or perceived racism - it was a celebration of the work of British soldiers and a thank-you for the sacrifices some have made for their country.

Seeing community gatherings like this, gathering to pay respect to others, is one of the more uplifting aspects of modern society. Makes you believe community still exists in some form in this country where too frequently people come together only for reasons of hate and exclusion.

[vimeo w=400&h=265]
Blackburn Homecoming - Duke of Lancaster Regiment from Garry Cook on Vimeo.
Wednesday December 2010 in Blackburn, Lancashire. The Duke of Lancaster regiment attended a service at Blackburn Cathedral before marching through the town.

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