An estimated 5,000 bikers have paid tribute to fallen servicemen at the National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire.
The second annual Ride to the Wall event involved people from all walks of life, including Journalists and Clergymen. Major-General Lamont Kirkland, commander of the Army’s 4th Division, attended in full uniform after riding his Harley Davidson from his Headquarters in Aldershot.”I think what you have seen today is the start of something really big – this will grow over time,” he said. “It’s deeply emotional and it’s deeply poignant – bikers are deeply respectful people. It shows we are supported very strongly at home and that the Army has never been held in higher regard.”
Set in the 150 acre National Memorial Arboretum, The National Armed Forces Memorial commemorates British servicemen and women who have lost their lives in action. The Armed Forces Memorial, dedicated in the presence of The Queen on 12 October 2007, is the UK’s tribute to the 16,000 men and women who have been killed on duty or as a result of terrorist action since 1948. Their names are inscribed on the giant Portland stone walls. There is a Chapel, in which a short, poignant service called The Homage is held every day at 10.50am. This service includes the Two Minutes Silence and reflects the whole ethos of the NMA. This is the only place in the UK in which such a service is held every day.