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Choir and congregation unite to mark Armistice centenary

PUBLISHED: 14:02 13 November 2018

The Aquarius Singers and guests prepare to perform  a poignant Remembrance Concert at All Saints Church in Bury St Edmunds on Sunday evening in front of a

The Aquarius Singers and guests prepare to perform a poignant Remembrance Concert at All Saints Church in Bury St Edmunds on Sunday evening in front of a "fountain" of poppies. Aquarius singer and church warden Clare Rose, left, founder and director Gill Garside, right and Diane Bishop, 77, who made 367 poppies to represent the number of casualties by the 12th Battalion, Suffolk Regiment in March 1918 and her relative Arthur Barnard and is now knitting purple poppies to represent the animals that died PICTURE : Andy Abbott

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The anniversary of the end of the First World War was marked in Bury St Edmunds with a concert of music and readings by ladies’ choir The Aquarius Singers, and guests, at All Saints Church.

The Aquarius Singers and guests prepare to perform  a poignant Remembrance Concert at All Saints Church in Bury St Edmunds on Sunday evening in front of a The Aquarius Singers and guests prepare to perform a poignant Remembrance Concert at All Saints Church in Bury St Edmunds on Sunday evening in front of a "fountain" of poppies. Diane Bishop, 77, made 367 poppies to represent the number of casualties by the 12th Battalion, Suffolk Regiment in March 1918 and her relative Arthur Barnard 2nd Lt Arthur Barnard's grave in the Etaples Military Cemetery in France PICTURE : Andy Abbott

The programme included songs of the time by composers such as Elgar along with sacred music and ended with a peace anthem from Bob Chilcott’s “A Little Jazz Mass”.

On display in the church was a “fountain” of poppies knitted by members of the All Saints’ congregation, and members of the Aquarius Singers.

One knitter, 77-year-old Diane Bishop, made 367 poppies, to represent the number of casualties sustained by the 12th Battalion, Suffolk Regiment, in March 1918 during the first battle of Bapaume and included her cousin 2nd Lt Arthur Wilson Barnard, who died of wounds aged 24 and is buried at Etaples Military Cemetery.

She said: “Arthur’s father was my grandmother’s brother and she was someone I knew very well yet no one ever mentioned his name. I think it was too painful. The family lived in Dedham and he was one of eight, with one brother and six sisters. I have a photograph of Arthur’s grave taken by my son, but none of him, but with all those sisters there must be some more relatives, so I am going to keep on digging in the hope of finding out more.”

The Aquarius Singers and guests prepare to perform  a poignant Remembrance Concert at All Saints Church in Bury St Edmunds on Sunday evening in front of a The Aquarius Singers and guests prepare to perform a poignant Remembrance Concert at All Saints Church in Bury St Edmunds on Sunday evening in front of a "fountain" of poppies. Diane Bishop, 77, made 367 poppies to represent the number of casualties by the 12th Battalion, Suffolk Regiment in March 1918 and her relative Arthur Barnard PICTURE : Andy Abbott

She is now knitting purple poppies which mark the many animal victims of the war - it is estimated that eight million horses and donkeys died in the First World War alone.

Armed Forces charity SSAFA and All Saints Church Lighting Fund benefitted from a retiring collection.

The Aquarius Singers and guests prepare to perform  a poignant Remembrance Concert at All Saints Church in Bury St Edmunds on Sunday evening in front of a The Aquarius Singers and guests prepare to perform a poignant Remembrance Concert at All Saints Church in Bury St Edmunds on Sunday evening in front of a "fountain" of poppies. Diane Bishop, 77, made 367 poppies to represent the number of casualties by the 12th Battalion, Suffolk Regiment in March 1918 and her relative Arthur Barnard PICTURE : Andy Abbott

The Aquarius Singers and guests prepare to perform  a poignant Remembrance Concert at All Saints Church in Bury St Edmunds on Sunday evening in front of a The Aquarius Singers and guests prepare to perform a poignant Remembrance Concert at All Saints Church in Bury St Edmunds on Sunday evening in front of a "fountain" of poppies. Diane Bishop, 77, made 367 poppies to represent the number of casualties by the 12th Battalion, Suffolk Regiment in March 1918 and her relative Arthur Barnard PICTURE : Andy Abbott

The Aquarius Singers and guests prepare to perform  a poignant Remembrance Concert at All Saints Church in Bury St Edmunds on Sunday evening in front of a The Aquarius Singers and guests prepare to perform a poignant Remembrance Concert at All Saints Church in Bury St Edmunds on Sunday evening in front of a "fountain" of poppies. Aquarius singer and church warden Clare Rose, founder and director Gill Garside and Diane Bishop, 77, who made 367 poppies to represent the number of casualties by the 12th Battalion, Suffolk Regiment in March 1918 and her relative Arthur Barnard PICTURE : Andy Abbott

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