Smaller parade on Civic Sunday but the sun shone
A smaller procession than usual marked Civic Sunday as new Mayor and Mayoress of Longridge Coun David and Mrs Sheila Moon headed the traditional parade through the town.
Also this year, there was the noted absence of the pairing of father and son Ken and Andrew Brierley as Longridge Royal British Legion standard bearer and parade marshall respectively.
Both always stalwarts for the Civic Sunday tradition, Ken Brierley has now retired as bearer and, with the men’s section virtually closed, there is no successor, while Andrew was indisposed on the day.
The Women’s Section was represented by committee member May Squires only, as president Irene Parkinson was also indisposed, and apart from strong contingents of the Church Brigade, Longridge RAF Cadet Squadron, Longridge Band with Lancaster Corps of Drums, no other uniformed organisations were able to take part.
Guest marshall for the day was Coun Paul Byrne, who saw the procession off in bright sunshine for the parade to St Paul’s Church for the civic service taken by Longridge vicar, the Rev David Anderson. Guests included the mayors and mayoresses of Ribble Valley and Clitheroe and the borough’s chief executive Marshall Scott and his wife.
During the service, readings were by Mrs Moon and Pam Cliff, prayers were taken by Father Harry Doyle and Father David Chinnery, the choir’s anthem was I Will Sing With The Spirit and the band played Panis Angelicus and County Palatine.
In his address, the Rev Anderson said how he noticed changes in the community during the six years of his ministry, and that Longridge people, being proud but with problems, were now hiding their needs behind closed doors. But he praised the voluntary work being done by individuals and through groups, and by the council for which he asked guidance and prayer as it started its new year.