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Page Turning Ceremony

Page Turning of the Books of Remembrance Ceremony

In conjunction with the Christ Church Cathedral authorities, the regimental trusts of the Oxfordshire Yeomanry and Oxfordshire & Buckinghamshire Light Infantry, hold a bi-monthly service of Page Turning. This is a very pleasant, but poignant occasion which involves turning the page of the respective Books of Remembrance (which are held in locked glass cases within the Military Chapel of Christ Church Cathedral, Oxford) and reading out the names of officers and soldiers who have given their lives during both World War One and World War Two – 5 names for each war and regiment.

This short service is normally carried out in the Military Chapel within the Cathedral and takes place on a Saturday at 11am.   Participants (nominated readers) are usually expected to be in place for 10.45am and anyone wishing to attend is advised to be early to claim one of the limited number of seats.  Anyone who wishes to join with us, in remembering these gallant men, are very welcome, especially family members of the men whose name are being read.  On some special days (such as the 11 November-Armistice day) the ceremony will be held in the main body of the cathedral.  This usually brings a larger audience and the start time is usually 10.30am.

The Trustees of the Oxfordshire Yeomanry Trust, following a fund-raising event, had 3 Altar Kneelers manufactured for use in the Military Chapel.  They were made in the colour of Mantua Purple with the Queen Adelaide Cypher embroidered upon them.  At a previous Turning ceremony – 6th May 2017 – the kneelers were positioned at the altar and were then dedicated.

Future  Dates  and  names  to  be  read  for  the  ceremonies

Dates for 2020 are as below: –

4th January (Saturday)

7th March (Saturday)

2nd May (Saturday) – Please read the notes below for some changes taking place !

11th July (Saturday) – Please read the notes below for some changes taking place !

5th September (Saturday)

11th November (Wednesday)

2nd January 2021 (Saturday)

The next Page Turning event, which would have taken place on Saturday, 11th July 2020, like the previous occasion, is now CANCELLED.

During the COVID-19 pandemic the bi-monthly Turning of the Pages in the Books of Remembrance held in Christ Church Cathedral have been cancelled.  However, Canon Brian Shenton has suggested that we can all remember at home those whose names would have been read at the same time we should have met in Oxford.  The next service is due at 11.00am on Saturday 11th July

Below, are listed the names which would have been read out:-

First World War  1914-1918

Ernest Roads,    Killed in action at Gillemont Farm on May 18th 1917 aged 26

Frederick Joseph Rouse,    Died of wounds at Rifle Wood on April 2nd 1918 aged 23

Leslie William Saunders,     Killed in action near Noyon on March 26th 1918 aged 22

Matthew Francis Saunders,     Killed in action at Gillemont Farm on June 22nd 1917 aged 31

John Willoughby Scott,     Killed in action near Arras on April 23rd 1917 aged 38

2nd World War  1939-1946

Robert Bruce Bland,    Killed in action at Boxmeer, Holland on November 17th 1944 aged 32

Harold Percy Brown,    Died in captivity at Nanchon Yai, Thailand on July 9th 1943 aged 21

Cyril Buckle,    Died in captivity at Tamakan, Thailand on August 28th 1943 aged 24

Ronald Lewis Busby,     Died of wounds at Singapore on February 15th 1942 aged 21

Donald Henry Caldwell,    Died in captivity at Chungkai, Thailand on March 10th 1943 aged 27

Once the lockdown is lifted and life returns to some normality the services will resume and we will physically read the names, of those who have been remembered virtually.   You will, of course, be informed of when this ceremony restarts.   Depending on when the ceremonies restart, this could be a ‘bumper-edition’ ceremony !

When ‘normal-service’ is resumed, can I remind anyone wishing to attend the service at Oxford’s Christ Church cathedral that the service begins at 11:00hrs and people are requested to be seated by 10:45, thank you.

The location for Christ Church Cathedral (beyond the college entrance), St Aldates, Oxford.

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