The 30,000th playing of the last post commemorating the casualties of the First World War, is to be celebrated at fire stations around the island today (Thursday).
Members of the public are being invited to go along to their local fire station tonight where the island’s fire brigade will join firemen across the world to commemorate the official Last Post ceremony in Belgium.
All seven of the island’s fire stations in Douglas, Peel, Ramsey, Castletown, Port Erin, Laxey and Kirk Michael will mark the occasion with a reading of a commemorative text followed by a moment of silence. At each of the fire stations a buglar will play the Last Post, which is the traditional final salute to the fallen.
Events at Douglas fire station will be led by chief fire officer Kevin Groom, who will welcome guests at 6.45pm before the Last Post is sounded at 7pm. A similar schedule will be followed at the other six fire stations around the island.
Traditionally the Last Post has been played under the Menin Gate Memorial to the Missing in Ypres, every evening since 1928, with the exception of the war years 1940-44. This has always been played by fire station volunteers from around Ypres where the 30,000th ceremony takes place today.
The daily tribute at the Menin Gate is organised by the last Post Association as a way to remember the thousands of casualties from the First World War, including those people whose bodies were never recovered. The official ceremony in Belgium is to be streamed live on the internet. Further information can be found at www.gonewest.be/en/last-post/30000th-last-post