SERVICEMEN and women who have died in conflicts and are buried in a Trowbridge cemetery are to be remembered at two services in November.

The Friends of the Down Cemetery have joined with Trowbridge Royal British Legion to organise a joint ceremony at the cemetery to remember those that have fallen in conflict.

On Wednesday, November 3 The Friends will be joined by Captain (Rtd) Roy Zaman and Air Vice Marshall (Rtd) Martin Clark on behalf of the RBL, together with other RBL members, to place poppy crosses on the war graves of those buried at the cemetery.

The main ceremony will take place between 10am and 12pm on Wednesday, November 3, with an additional event on Saturday, November 6 from 10am to 12pm.

Robert Wall, chairman of The Friends, said: “Over recent years The Friends of the Down Cemetery, a group of community volunteers, have tended the old section of the Trowbridge cemetery.

“During this period a large number of graves have been uncovered that mark those who fell in conflict but whose graves are not marked by the distinctive white headstones that are laid by The Commonwealth War Graves Commission.

“Research has also discovered a number of memorials of military personnel who are not buried at the cemetery, but whose passing are remember on the headstones of family members.

“The event will help us to ensure that the sacrifices these people gave are remembered, and it will be especially poignant this year to be able to mark those graves which have been recently rediscovered and to honour their roles in conflict.”

Among the graves that will be marked is that of First World War soldier William John Cockerton, who was injured and reported missing in 1917 and subsequently held as a prisoner of war.

After having been recorded as missing, his family were subsequently informed he had died and his name was added to the Roll of Honour that can be found in the entrance to Trowbridge Town Hall.

He returned in January 1919, having taken two years to come home, and was able to read his own obituary. He died of malaria later in 1919, aged 25.

Although he did not die in conflict his grave is one of the many that will be marked on November 6 in remembrance of the role he played in wartime service in India, Mesopotamia and Turkey.

This year The Friends and RBL will be laying the poppy crosses on more than 100 graves, including the Commonwealth War Graves. Soldier silhouettes from the There But Not There initiative will also be displayed.

Trowbridge Town Council is planning to go ahead with this year’s annual Remembrance Service on Sunday, November 14 at St James’ Church, along with the traditional wreath laying ceremony at the town War Memorial, with extra Covid-safety measures in place.

There will be annual services throughout Wiltshire to commemorate and honour the contribution of military and civilian service men and women in the two World Wars and later conflicts to defend the UK’s democratic freedoms and way of life.