Why is Lanark’s Remembrance not INSIDE the Memo?

Lanark Remembrance Day Service, held outside the Memorial Hall in cold weather (Picture Sarah Peters).
Lanark Remembrance Day Service, held outside the Memorial Hall in cold weather (Picture Sarah Peters).

The Gazette this week carries a letter from 1st Lanark Girls’ Brigade who took part in this month’s Remembrance Service held, again, OUTSIDE the hall which was built as Lanark’s War Memorial.

Here is the text of the letter, from Heather Paterson, and it raises a question which has been asked frequently since the Hall reopened after the repairs - why is the service held outside in the bitter November weather rather than indoors:

“1st Lanark Girls’ Brigade was honoured to accept the Community Council’s invitation to participate in Lanark’s Annual Service of Remembrance. The request came via email in mid October but this was the only communication we received. There was no subsequent communication detailing the order of the procession, nor, as in previous years, a rehearsal. The parade from St Nicholas to the Memorial hall was disorganised with no clarity as to the order of organisations or colour party.

The police on duty had clearly not been briefed on the order of proceedings.

The only part of the Memorial Hall that was open was the Hall of Remembrance and was only used for the laying of wreaths.

The service therefore was conducted outside on the pavement with only those in the immediate vicinity being able to hear what was being said.

Further the weather was atrocious – hardly surprising for November – leaving my Company cold, wet and bewildered.

I fail to understand why the service at the Memorial Hall was not conducted indoors as it was in previous years prior to the refurbishment. The hall was built to allow people to pay their respects to those who lost their lives for our freedom. It is after all a “Memorial” hall.

I understand that in Hamilton the council not only funds the opening of its Headquarters for the Rembrance Service there but also provides a buffet. Although tea and coffee was kindly provided by St Nicholas in their hall, it is likely that only those who attended the earlier Church Service would have been aware of it.

This important event in the life of our Community needs a radical rethink and the time for this is now, not in eleven months time.”

Let us know your views - on line, or by email to me, Helen McCall