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Dereham school becomes the first in Norfolk to be affiliated with the Royal British Legion

PUBLISHED: 09:36 15 May 2017 | UPDATED: 09:36 15 May 2017

A special service took place at Dereham's Northgate High School to become officially affiliated with the Royal British Legion. Pictured with the certificate of merit are (L) alternate provision co-ordinator Calum MacDonald and Sir William Cubitt. Picture: Ian Burt

A special service took place at Dereham's Northgate High School to become officially affiliated with the Royal British Legion. Pictured with the certificate of merit are (L) alternate provision co-ordinator Calum MacDonald and Sir William Cubitt. Picture: Ian Burt

Archant 2017

A school in Dereham has become the first in Norfolk to become an official partner to the Royal British Legion (RBL) and has been recognised for outstanding work in the field of remembrance.

A special service took place at Dereham's Northgate High School to become officially affiliated with the Royal British Legion. Picture: Ian BurtA special service took place at Dereham's Northgate High School to become officially affiliated with the Royal British Legion. Picture: Ian Burt

The affiliation between Northgate High School and the Dereham branch of RBL means that the school will now have a direct link to the remembrance organisation.

Students and staff gathered for a ceremony on Friday, May 12, which was attended by special guests including the chairman of RBL Norfolk, John Boisson, the president of RBL Norfolk, Major General Sir William Cubitt, and the parents of Lewis Hendry, an ex-pupil who sadly passed whilst on patrol in Afghanistan in 2011.

Speaking to the students Mr Boisson said: “This affiliation cements the partnership between Northgate and RBL and it gives me great pleasure and honour to take part in it.”

He also spoke of the importance of remembrance for future generations, adding: “The poppy was adopted not only as a symbol of remembrance but also as a symbol of hope, hope that future generations can learn from the mistakes of the past.”

A special service took place at Dereham's Northgate High School to become officially affiliated with the Royal British Legion. Pictured is RBL County Chairman John Boisson. Picture: Ian BurtA special service took place at Dereham's Northgate High School to become officially affiliated with the Royal British Legion. Pictured is RBL County Chairman John Boisson. Picture: Ian Burt

Sir Cubitt presented school staff member and ex-serviceman Calum MacDonald with the award of merit, a top accolade for outstanding work in the field of remembrance.

When presenting the award he said: “I’d like to thank you all for being here today and for all you have done in the field of remembrance.”

After the ceremony Mr Boisson said: “Northgate High School has achieved some phenomenal results promoting Remembrance within their local community over a number of years.

“This is a top accolade and Northgate is one of only three schools in the county that has been recognised for their recent commemorative endeavours with this award.”

A special service took place at Dereham's Northgate High School to become officially affiliated with the Royal British Legion. Picture: Ian BurtA special service took place at Dereham's Northgate High School to become officially affiliated with the Royal British Legion. Picture: Ian Burt

Head of school, Andy Mason, said: “We are very proud to be presented with the certificate of merit in recognition of our spirit of remembrance in our local community and to be affiliated as a sign of partnership with the British legion. Today was a fabulous opportunity to celebrate the values and ethos we engender in our students and our place in the wider community.”

Any schools that wish to explore the possibility of affiliating with their local Legion branch can call 0808 8028080.

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