Wiltshire

Wootton Bassett residents get repatriation tribute tree

The planting of the tree
Image caption The English oak was planted in the grounds of St Bartholomew and All Saints Church

A tree has been planted as a tribute to the "generous spirit" of the people of Wootton Bassett at repatriations.

The English oak was planted in the grounds of St Bartholomew and All Saints Church on Friday.

It is a tribute to residents who have stood in silence as fallen troops have journeyed through the town since 2007.

The Wiltshire Tree People, an organisation that works towards the conservation, planting and appreciation of trees, provided the oak.

Repatriations through the High Street are scheduled to come to an end in September when RAF Lyneham is closed.

John Neale, chairman of the Wiltshire Tree People, said: "I felt it was important to express our thanks to the people of Wootton Bassett for their unswerving respect at each fallen soldier's repatriation.

"They represent so many of us who appreciate the regard they show others. The tree will stand as testimony of our regard for them."

The vicar of Wootton Bassett, the Reverend Canon Thomas Woodhouse, said: "The worshipping community at St Bartholomew's feels privileged to have been asked to provide the space and place for this commemorative tree."

A brass plaque accompanies the tree and bears the inscription: "Presented to the people of Wootton Bassett to record their generous spirit in honouring the fallen heroes of war 2007 - 2011."

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