Her Majesty’s Lord-Lieutenant’s Annual Award Ceremony for the County of Kent took place on 25th September 2018 at the prestigious Salomon’s Estate in Royal Tunbridge Wells.
The annual Lord-Lieutenant’s Awards are for Reservists, Cadet Force Adult Volunteers, cadets and employees of the Reserve Forces and Cadet Organisations of the Armed Forces and are recognised as laudatory honours throughout the Ministry of Defence.
Her Majesty’s Lord Lieutenant, The Viscount De L’Isle MBE, presented 19 Meritorious Service Certificates and 9 Cadet of the Year Awards. The Shepherd Neame Best Reservist Award was presented by Mr G Hilton, along with a trophy and a cheque for £100. The Lord-Lieutenant’s Certificates for Meritorious Service were instituted in order to afford public recognition to those members of the Reserve and Cadet Forces whose efforts are not recognised by the twice yearly Honours Lists. The Lord-Lieutenant’s Certificate thus ranks second to The Queen’s Honours Lists.
The Cadet of the Year Award marks the achievement of outstanding service by an individual to their Cadet movement. A certificate is awarded, together with a Lord-Lieutenant’s Badge which the individual is entitled to wear when in uniform.
The best Reservist Award is awarded to the Reservist considered by the selection board to have achieved the most or to have made the greatest contribution to the Reserve Service in the County of Kent.
Wet weather did not stop Kent from honouring those who served in the First World War and those who serve the county today.
Although the Kent First World War Centenary Service on Sunday 23rd September had to be scaled back because of torrential rain earlier in the day, the poignant tribute to First World War heroes attracted around one thousand people to the Spitfire Ground.
Those attending what is likely to be Kent’s biggest commemoration of the 100 years since the ending of The Great War were treated to a poignant event that honoured those who sacrificed so much. The service, organised by the Kent Lieutenancy, was led by Dean of Canterbury the Very Revd Robert Willis DL with multi-faith participation.
The choirs of Canterbury and Rochester Cathedrals sang together for the first time, with some ninety voices making a wonderful sound. The Brompton and Shorncliffe Military Wives Choirs sang period songs beautifully.
The 3rd Battalion the Princess of Wales’s Royal Regiment paraded across the waterlogged ground and stood before an altar of drums in this drumhead service typically seen on a battlefield.
The Dean spoke of those “dreadful days” of the First World War. He recalled the year 1918 when the Armistice was signed that ended hostilities at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month.
“The sudden silence when the guns stopped, the silence that was peace,” he said. “There was a sense of freedom in the air. Peace was a reality. Yet the ‘war to end all wars’ was the precursor to another.”
The Lord-Lieutenant of Kent Viscount De L’Isle took the salute. He said: “This was a most moving occasion and a fitting commemoration of the thousands of men and women of Kent who did so much to secure our freedom.
“If soldiers of the First World War could cope so stoically with months of heavy rain and deep mud on the Western Front, it was no hardship for us to spend a few hours in Canterbury honouring their memory.”
He added: “I’m very grateful to everyone who defied the challenging conditions to attend the service, the 3rd Battalion the Princess of Wales’s Royal Regiment and Band, the Cathedral and Military Wives choirs, all participants and volunteers, Kent County Cricket Club, and our generous supporters. They all made it a truly special event that I’m sure will live long in the memory.”
TPS Global Logistics based in Aylesford are proud winners of the prestigious Queen’s Award for Enterprise for a second time. The company also celebrated their 15 year anniversary with 100 employees, customers, friends, family and dignitaries joining them for a formal presentation of the spectacular crystal trophy and a citation from the Lord Lieutenant of Kent, followed by tours of the newly refurbished Aylesford warehouse, offices and distribution centre.
The Lord-Lieutenant in his speech said:
‘This is a great day for everyone who has contributed to the remarkable success of CRM Logistics Limited, now TPS Global Logistics, founded only 15 years ago. This is the second Queen’s Award for International Trade I have had the pleasure to present to you, and reinforces the high regard in which you are held in the exponential increase in demand for export growth of the business, and exceptional customer care.
Today’s event exemplifies achievements, success and excellence. It recognises what is an exceptional accomplishment by any standard.
A great deal of dedication and effort by everyone in the team goes into achieving and maintaining the success recognised by this Award.
I congratulate and thank each and every person involved in this remarkable success story, for what you have achieved in winning these two accolades and hope your business will continue to grow.
Kent is very fortunate to have so many vibrant companies contributing to the county’s economy. It is to be hoped in these uncertain times we will be continuing to contribute to our nation’s trade both with Europe and across the globe.’
Message of Congratulations from Viscount De L’Isle, Lord-Lieutenant of Kent and Deputy President of SERFCA (Kent)
“I am delighted to congratulate Kent County Council on winning the prestigious Ministry of Defence 2018 Employer Recognition Scheme Gold Award for outstanding commitment and support towards the Armed Forces Community. This reinforces Kent’s long-standing support for the Armed Forces and their families. A significant number of veterans and their dependants live among us, as well as the Regular and Reserve Forces. Our magnificent young men and women of the Cadet Forces and CCFs will, I am sure, aid the continuance and growth of our support into the future.
This award is very much an award for all those involved. We can be pleased and proud of all those involved.”
Details of the Gold Award can be found at https://kccmediahub.net/gold-award-kccs-support-military745
On 26th July at St Andrew’s Gardens in Gravesend, Councillor David Turner, as the Leader of Gravesham Borough Council and Freeman of the Borough, along with Rt Rev James Longstaff, Bishop of Rochester and Bishop of HM Prisons, unveiled a statue of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II in commemoration of her being the longest reigning monarch. Dr Bhargawa Vasudaven DL was present as the representative of the Lieutenancy of Kent, and also in attendance were various community and council leaders, senior representatives from the Fire Service, Police, Port of London Authority and various local voluntary organisations.
Given Gravesham’s history and diverse multicultural population, the statue of Her Majesty signifies much to the people of Gravesham, chiefly:
Dr Bhargawa Vasudaven DL said “It was a proud day for all of us in Gravesham to be presented with Her Majesty’s statue in full glory.”
The Lord-Lieutenant of Kent, Viscount De L’Isle MBE took the salute during the service held at The Step Short Arch on Lees Cliff Road, Folkestone on 22nd July. The Lord Warden of The Cinque Ports Admiral of The Fleet The Lord Boyce KG GCB OBE DL made an address, before unveiling two plaques marking the event.
The Parade then marched down the Road of Remembrance to the Harbour Arm from where many millions of soldiers crossed to the Western Front during the First World War. A number of soldiers never returned and were buried in the military war graves in France, of those who returned a number had suffered life-changing injuries in body or mind. There can be few Kentish families who did not lose at least one member of their number.
Lord De L’Isle said “The people of Folkestone should be proud of this iconic and enduring memorial, reminding us all of the part the town played in the First World War”
The Arch was opened by Prince Henry of Wales on 4th August 2014. A history of the Arch can be found at http://www.stepshort.co.uk/
On Saturday 14th July Mrs Georgie Warner DL represented the Lord- Lieutenant of Kent and opened the Centenary Gateway 1918-2018, at Brenchley Memorial Hall.
The site of the village hall, and cricket ground together with other green field space, were provided by the community in 1919 for the use of the community in perpetuity.
The poet, writer and soldier, Siegfried Sassoon was born in the parish in 1886 and often wrote about cricket in Brenchley. This superb gateway with locally made plaques depicting a soldier and a cricketer make a fitting addition to the Brenchley village site.
Deputy Lieutenant Peter Blackwell JP DL represented the Lord-Lieutenant of Kent at the RAF 100 plaque unveiling event at the Tunbridge Wells Cemetery on 14th July. The unveiling of the memorial was to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the RAF and in memory of the 24 RAF personnel buried there.
Deputy Mayor Cllr James Scholes laid a wreath on behalf of the Tunbridge Wells Borough Council and in his address mentioned that he was born six weeks after his father had died serving in the RAF. During the ceremony the band of 128 (Tunbridge Wells) Squadron ATC played four pieces. Mr Blackwell also gave an address where he referred to the three themes of RAF 100 – Commemoration, Celebration and Inspiration and he made reference to Royal Tunbridge Wells being the only town in the country to unveil a Memorial to the RAF dead of WW1 and WW2 as part of the Anniversary.
A special launch event for Maidstone’s 2018 Community Mela took place at the kalaRED bar restaurant in Maidstone on July 5th. The Community Mela and Food Festival celebrates music, visual arts, food and dance from around the world. The launch event was attended by key partners including representatives from local community groups, Kent County Council, Kent Police and Maidstone Borough Council. Guests included Deputy Lieutenant Trevor Sturgess DL who was representing the Lord-Lieutenant at the event, the Mayor of Maidstone Cllr David Naghi, and KCC Cabinet Member for Corporate and Democratic Services Cllr Eric Hotson.
The purpose of the launch was to update partners around the plans for the Community Mela this year and to inform them of the journey it has been on to raise the required funds for the event to take place again. The Community Mela is organised by Cohesion Plus and Kent Equality Cohesion Council supported this year by funding from Awards for All, KCC Members Fund, Golding Homes as well as donations from members of the public. The Mela has been taking place in the borough since 2003 and is delivered in partnership with local partners and volunteers who have all worked tirelessly to ensure that Mela will take place again this year.
According to Gurvinder Sandher who is leading on the Community Mela, “This year has been a particular challenge to raise the funds required to make the Community Mela happen. I am pleased to say we have finally managed to reach our target. We have a great programme planned both on and off stage and a range of stalls serving food from around the world. The Community Mela is a great example of an event that brings diverse communities together and celebrates the cohesion of Maidstone and our shared British values. We hope the residents of Maidstone will come out and support our work.”
Even in the presence of royalty, the Few inevitably steal the show – and it was Wing Commander Paul Farnes DFM who did just that at July’s Memorial Day commemorations at the Battle of Britain Memorial at Capel-le-Ferne, near Folkestone.
Wing Commander Farnes, two weeks short of his 100th birthday, took centre stage at a moving event that included a display by a Spitfire from the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight and music from the RAF Central Band.
The event was held in the presence of the Trust’s Patron, HRH Prince Michael of Kent GCVO, who was welcomed by the Lord- Lieutenant of Kent, The Viscount De L’Isle MBE.
As well as marking the 25th anniversary of the unveiling of the National Memorial to the Few by Her Late Majesty Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother, this year’s Memorial Day marked the 100th anniversary of the RAF.
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