Charlie Nicholls, Community Mental Health Nurse, based at Haydon’s Court, Honiton will participate in this year's Armistice Remembrance Day service at the Menin Gate in Ypres, Belgium.
Major Charlie Nicholls RAMC (Retd), who has been Pipe Major of the Exmouth and District Band for more than two years, will lead the band at the Menin Gate, Ypres, on Sunday 11 November. This is the war memorial dedicated to the British and Commonwealth soldiers who were killed in the Ypres Salient of World War I and whose graves are unknown.
The Band have been invited by the Devon Fire and Rescue Service Ceremonial Unit, to support and contribute to the main Parade and formal ancillary events in Belgium, as part of the Armistice Memorial 2018. Around twenty pipers have committed much time and effort practicing regularly in preparation for the parade.
Charlie, originally from Inverness, said piping is in his blood and learnt to play when he was in the Army Medical Corps. He said: "It is an honour to be taking part in the parade. We hope to make a respectful contribution to remember the fallen of all wars and support those who endeavour to make such events so memorable. My grandfather was a casualty of the Battle of Passchendaele and my father served in the Second World War. We look forward to marching as part of the main Armistice parade, playing the Highland Bagpipes with pride in honour of all those who will be remembered on the 11 November, when we parade at the Menin Gate."
The band will be wearing Black Watch Highland Regalia for the international event which will be attended by thousands of people as well as Royalty and it will be broadcast across many countries.
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Charlie, pictured right, in Ypres, Armistice Day 2017, and above at the Armed Forces parade, Exmouth, June 2018.