REMEMBRANCE Day in Skipton on Sunday will be attended by hundreds of service men and women as the town commemorates the hundredth anniversary of the end of the First World War.

The parade itself will take place in the morning, as normal, and will be followed by a wreath laying ceremony at the war memorial at the top of Skipton High Street and also by a service at Holy Trinity Church, led by the Rev Veronica James.

Following the service, the parade will reform before heading back through the town. There will also be a special ringing of the church bells, and in the evening, a beacon will be lit at the top of the church tower.

The parade will form on Bunkers Hill, next to Skipton Combined Courts, and will set off at around 10.40am heading onto Newmarket Street before turning right onto the High Street and towards the war memorial for the sounding of the Last Post and wreath laying at 11am.

Following the church service, the parade will reform on The Bailey and then march down the High Street, onto Newmarket Street and then back to Bunkers Hill.

Given the significance of this year’s event, a large number of representatives of the armed forces, emergency services and community groups will be joining the British Legion for the parade – including a contingent from the 5th Regiment Royal Artillery and from the Army Foundation College in Harrogate. Dave Parker, chief officer of Skipton Town Council, said: “We know that many community groups will wish to take part this year and we would ask that such groups aim to gather on Bunkers Hill from around 10.15am and make the parade marshal aware of their presence so they can be included once the parade is formed up.”

To allow for the parade to take place safely, a number of town centre roads will be closed to traffic at times between 10am and around 12.30pm – including the High Street.

Mr Parker said: “We would ask drivers to be patient and to respect the occasion. Delays will be kept to a minimum but the High Street is expected to be very busy and will need to be closed during both the parade and the wreath-laying ceremony.

“Everyone is very welcome to attend the ceremony at the war memorial and the church service but, if you are planning to arrive by car, please allow sufficient time as the town centre car parks may be affected by the road closures.”

To mark the occasion, Skipton was selected to take part in the national ‘Battle’s Over’ tribute later in the day.

A beacon will be lit at the top of Holy Trinity Church Tower at exactly 7pm – one of 1,000 beacons which will be lit at the same time across the country.

It will take place after the sounding of the last post and will be followed by a special ringing of the church bells, when the church becomes one of a thousand churches and cathedrals to take part in ‘Battle’s Over - Ringing out for Peace’.

Kerry Wheelwright, the town council’s events and tourism manager, said: “We’re very proud that Skipton is involved in the ‘Battle’s Over’ commemoration and that Holy Trinity Church will have both a beacon and will be taking part in the national ringing out of bells. The last time we had a beacon was to commemorate The Queen’s 90th birthday – and we hope that as many people as possible will be able to join us again in the grounds of Holy Trinity as we light our WW1 Beacon of Light”

Skipton’s War Memorial – or Cenotaph – was unveiled on April 8, 1922 and is maintained on behalf of the town by Skipton Town Council.

As part of this year’s commemorations, Skipton BID has provided funding for the repainting of the railings around the memorial and for some additional cleaning to the base of the monument itself. The memorial requires periodic specialist cleaning, which the council carries out every few years.

The town council has also recently agreed a plan to light up the memorial – following representations from the Skipton Branch of the Royal British Legion – and is also considering improvements to the garden next to the memorial.

The Skipton Civic Society has published a commemorative booklet ‘The War Memorial and the Lives of Skipton People during the First World War’ which includes extracts from letters of the time, together with archive material from the Craven Herald and other sources.

Copies will be available to buy for £1 on the High Street on Sunday morning, and also from the Tourist Information Centre and Skipton Town Council reception in the town hall.

A special vintage bus service will also operate from Skipton on Sunday to take people to a remembrance event taking place in Embsay.

Back to Dear Old Blighty -The End of the War - Beginning of Peace’ – is taking place in Embsay and at the Embsay and Bolton Abbey Steam Railway.

People will be able to catch the bus from outside Skipton Library, on the High Street, with the first bus departing shortly after the wreath laying ceremony at the war memorial.

The annual Skipton and Craven Poppy Appeal was launched on October 29 at Craven Court, Skipton. It was attended by chairman of Craven District Council, Wendy Hull; Skipton Mayor, Alan Hickman, and the Rev Veronica James, as well as members of the Skipton Royal British Legion, and Poppy Appeal organiser, Jean Phillip.

Bentham-based author Adrian Horn will discuss his first novel, Anaesthesia, a love story set against the background of drug addiction in the First World War with Bentham Library Reading Group on Tuesday, November 13, at 2pm. The event at Bentham Library is one of several commemorative events taking place in North Yorkshire libraries.