A dust whom England bore

Today is my favourite working day of the year.

Today is the day that every student willingly gives up their break time and gathers with every member of staff in our School Yard to remember.

Over 1000 of us (and welcome gatecrashers from the school next door), stand quietly and respectfully to hear a Sixth Former describe three students who have fallen in conflict. His clear voice carries through the cold air telling us their names, where they were from, what house they part of when they were a student here, where they fell, and their age when they died for us.

It reminds us that these fallen were once boys. Our boys. They wore our uniform. They played on our fields. They had assembly in our School Hall. They had lessons in classrooms we still use.

Another student reads a poem and then a third plays the Last Post on his trumpet before we all stand in silence for a minute. A time for remembering.

The silence is broken by the Reveille.

The students continue to stand when it is over, lost in their own thoughts, they need to be dismissed so that they can enjoy a few minutes of break before lessons recommence.

Staff walk away, pretending they have something in their eye.

We do this every year. It is the only time in the year that the whole school gathers together. It is poignant, moving and at the same time uplifting.

I am so proud that in my small part of the world…we will remember.

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