The Face of Remembrance in Swindon

Nothing to say on this really other than that the Remembrance Parade, Service, Ceremony here in Swindon is still as strong as ever after a large turn out of both those who took part in the parade and the public who came to support. The weather was perfect, a bright sunny November day.

Repatriation at Brize Norton of Two Scottish Soldiers killed in Afghanistan

Yesterday I attended the Repatriation of Cpl William Savage and Fusilier Samuel Flint of the Royal Highland Fusiliers, 2nd Battalion Royal Regiment of Scotland at Brize Norton. The soldiers were two of the three who were killed by a road side bomb in Afghanistan on the 30th April.

Despite absolutely awful weather of driving rain and 50mph winds hundreds turned out to send them on their way.

Particularly sad was watching the 27 year old wife of Cpl William Savage who is expecting their son shortly.

What was also interesting for me was I hooked up with the other photographers there from Getty, Reuters, AFP etc and had some very interesting discussions about the state of the industry!!!

Back to the repatriation though, I believe that even if you dont support what is happening in Afghanistan etc if the opportunity arrises you should try to go to at least one repatriation service. It is an experience. For me despite going to pretty much all of them and having published a successful book of images and poems about them in Wootton Bassett I still really feel for the families of those that have fallen.

Ben Nealon of Soldier Soldier Meets Swindon Soldiers

Yesterday I had a lovely time photographing the actor Ben Nealon OBE at the Wyvern Theatre who was meeting a couple of local TA Soldiers from A Squadron Royal Yeomanry. Why, well Ben was a star of the hit TV series Soldier Soldier and was here to meet the press in advance of his performances in ‘Go Back To Murder’ at the Wyvern Theatre. (See the Press Release below). Ben received his OBE last year for his charity work with Pump Aid which he started over 10 years ago. And he is a really nice guy as well. A pleasure to work with.

STAR OF SOLDIER, SOLDIER MEETS LOCAL HEROES

The Agatha Christie Company will bring Go Back To Murder to the Wyvern’s stage from Monday 8 to Saturday 13 April. Ahead of performances in Swindon, Ben made a visit to the theatre on Wednesday 13 March to meet with ‘A Squadron’, one of five Royal Yeomanry Squadrons.

Ben Nealon, who is fondly remembered for his role as Captain Jeremy Forsyth in the long running ITV drama Soldier, Soldier, leads a heavyweight cast including prolific stage and TV actress Liza Goddard; child actress and grown-up screen-star and cover model Sophie Ward; Robert Duncan, fondly remembered for his role as jargon spouting chief executive Gus Hedges in Channel 4’s Drop The Dead Donkey; Gary Mavers, ITV’s Peak Practices’ smouldering medic Andrew Attwood; and Lysette Anthony who has been described as the ‘face of the eighties’ by super photographer David Bailey;

“Soldier, Soldier was on TV when I was growing up as an army cadet and my brother and I used to tune in every week to see what the King’s Fusiliers were up to,” said Captain Matt Fincham, Unit Press Officer/Spokesman, Royal Yeomanry. “It’s fair to say it inspired me to join the army as a regular, which in turn led me to the TA when I left.”

“Swindon’s ‘A Squadron’ is one of five Royal Yeomanry Squadrons which, equipped with RWMIK Landrovers, fulfil a ‘Light Cavalry’ role, providing reconnaissance to tell the rest of the army what the enemy are doing. The Yeomanry and the TA as a whole is increasingly used to support the regular army on operations worldwide.”

In addition to meeting with ‘A Squadron’, the Soldier, Soldier star will invite audiences in Swindon to donate to Help for Heroes after each performance of Agatha Christie’s Go Back For Murder. The charity delivers an enduring national network of support for our wounded and their families. They aim to inspire and enable those who have made sacrifices on our behalf to achieve their full potential.

“I am delighted that the Wyvern will be supporting Help For Heroes,” says Theatre Director Derek Aldridge. “Wiltshire is a county with a very close relationship with our forces and I know our audiences will be keen to support them.”

Go Back For Murder is a classic ‘Whodunit’ packed with intrigue, murder and suspense and one of over a dozen plays from the pen of the great Dame Agatha Christie. Go Back For Murder was adapted by Christie in 1960 from her novel Five Little Pigs, editing out the legendary detective Poirot for the stage version. Christie has sold over 2 billion books and is outsold only by the Bible and Shakespeare.

Suspects, secrets, and suspense abounds in this new production of Go Back for Murder at the Wyvern Theatre, Swindon, from Monday 8 to Saturday 13 April. Book tickets today at wyverntheatre.org.uk or by calling the Ticket Office on 01793 524 481.