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The Don War Memorial Bar in Stockton is a remarkable tribute to serving and retired members of the Armed forces started by owner Julie Cooper afer the murder of Lee Rigby. She has turned the rooms of the bar into a cave of memorabilia, is keen to get photos from serving or retired personnel – and especially to put up tributes to the fallen or injured. The emphasis is upon showing support for all nations that have contributed to the British Forces over the centuries in a show of solidarity.

Some 76,000 poppies now line the walls and ceilings and there is a cross for each person who has died in recent operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. She intends to have 100,000 poppies put up by this November – the centenary of the end of the Great War.

This year she is expecting some 300-plus to turn out on the 7th April for the parade which was started after she was asked to remove the Union Flag from the outside of her bar last year.

The Parade will form up outside the Town Hall from 1245hr and march up the High Street to the Cenotaph. The parade will return to The Don bar for a BBQ and music at which time there will be a service of blessing for all the flags and other memorabilia at the pub.

This is wonderful example of local inititives that can make all the difference. Well done Julie!

Do try to support this event if you are able to get to Stockton on the 7th.

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