A poignant tribute to the bravery of the men of West Norfolk who died nearly 100 years ago in the hell of Gallipoli was held on Saturday.
Numerous Royal British Legion standards and members of the Sea, Army and Air Cadets corps were on parade at St Nicholas Parish Church in Dersingham for the annual commemoration of the World War I campaign in 1915.
In particular, this village service is to remember the men of Sandringham Company, 5th Battalion Royal Norfolk Regiment who numbered amongst their dead.
Among these were the royal estate’s former agent Captain Frank Beck and 18 of the estate’s former workers.
Capt Beck and his men were the subject of a television drama starring David Jason in 1999 called All The King’s Men.
As they entered the church, 42F (King’s Lynn) Sqn, Air Training Corps Cadet Sergeant Jack Savage and his brother Lance Corporal Tom Savage of the Sandringham Detachment of the Norfolk Army Cadet Corps handed the congregation sprigs of the herb rosemary.
This signifies remembrance and is always worn at Gallipoli commemoration services as reminder of the campaign as the herb grows wild on the Gallipoli peninsular.
This 98th anniversary service was led by the Rev Michael Brock and organised by John Crowe of the Gallipoli Association.
The congregation, which grows larger year by year, included Squadron Leader Matthew Grinham, of the Royal Australian Air Force, Captain Andrew Thomas of the Royal New Zealand Army and Colonel Mehmet Calkayis, Army Attaché with the Turkish Embassy.
During the service wreaths were laid in the chapel dedicated to world wars.
The campaign in the Dardinelles peninsula against the German ally of Turkey was conducted by troops from Britain, France, Australia and New Zealand and intended to relieve the stalemate on the Western Front in France and Belgium.
But poorly planned and executed it saw 43,000 British, 47,000 French, and 33,000 Australian and New Zealand (ANZAC) troops killed with many more injured.
The Turkish dead are estimated to have numbered 65,000.