This years annual Royal Marines Band concert took place on the afternoon of Sunday 9 July at the Memorial Bandstand on Walmer Green.
The estimated crowd of some 10,000 were blessed with a wonderful sunny day, the best weather we have had on Band day for several years, and they enjoyed the pre-concert entertainment of a fly past of a Spitfire and Hurricane of the RAF Battle of Britain Memorial Flight, the Band of our local Sea Cadet Unit and the very popular ‘Victory Wartime Band’ who got everyone in the right mood for the main event.
Once again we had the Band of HM Royal Marines Portsmouth (Royal Band) conducted as usual by Lt Col Nick Grace OBE RM, and they gave the massed crowds a splendid afternoon of great music, with solo performances and of course the drums and bugles of the Corps of Drums.
The second half included the Rededication of the Bandstand, led by the Rev Seth Cooper, who read out the names of the eleven Bandsmen murdered by the IRA in 1989. This was followed by the two minutes silence, the Last Post, Reveille and the laying of wreaths by the family and friends of those lost, and the assembled dignitaries which included our town Mayor and our MP Mr Charlie Elphicke.
The afternoon ended with the singing of Rule Britannia, Land of Hope and Glory, the National Anthem, and finished with the playing of Hearts of Oak and the Royal Marines Regimental March, A life on the Ocean Wave.
Sadly, this was Lt Col Nick Grace final performance conducting the Band at Deal as he is now retiring after thirty five years service. We say thank you to him for the pleasure he has given to so many, particularly here in Deal over the last nine years, and wish him good health and happiness in his retirement.
Photos by Graham Murdoch & Lara Green