We will remember the sacrifice of war and the lessons for today

Posted On 08 Nov 2019 at 12:01 am

This Sunday is a day for reflection, a day to thank the brave service men and women who gave their lives for our freedom, a day to remember them.

I will be humbled and honoured to lay a wreath at the Old Steine War Memorial on Sunday, along with other city representatives.

Brighton and Hove is a peace-loving city, a city of sanctuary that seeks to welcome refugees seeking asylum from conflict around the world.

That is why we of all understand and appreciate the sacrifice our veterans made for us in warfare.

Labour councillor Amanda Grimshaw is an Armed Forces Champion. She delivers educational talks on the world wars and the heroes who gave their lives for the fight against fascism and tyranny.

Next week, she is visiting Ypres to lay a wreath on behalf of Brighton and Hove.

As Black History Month comes to a close, I want to pay tribute to the heroes who are often overlooked, like the West Indian regiments that docked from Seaford, or the first black officer in World War One Walter Tull.

I also hope that we can always maintain the spirit that remembrance is all about.

Sadly, the world wars and our role in them is too often politicised and used to justify xenophobia, hatred and bigotry.

These are in direct contradiction with the sacrifice our ancestors made and what they stood up against, and with the values this city holds so dear.

We must learn the sombre lessons that history has taught us, we must thank those who laid their lives on the line for us and we must honour their memory by respecting and cherishing our friends and neighbours of all religion, race, gender and creed.

It is up to all of us to further the cause of peace and ensure we put an end to conflicts across the world.

That is how we honour them – and honour them we must. We will remember them.

Councillor Nancy Platts is the Labour leader of Brighton and Hove City Council.

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