Prince William joins villagers in Snettisham at the commemoration of the of the 1953 Floods
The Market Place in Snettisham was filled for the commemoration of the 70th Anniversary of the 1953 Floods on Sunday morning, 29th January.
About to leave home for the army, David Bocking was only eighteen years old in 1953 when he was called upon to identify the bodies of friends and neighbours who had died in the tidal surge in January 1953. Now in his late eighties Mr Bocking has spent the past few months organising the commemorative event that took place over this weekend with the help of his friend David Drewery. He said: "I was there and I have vivd memories of that fateful night."
A service led by Rev Dan Tansey in the Market Place was attended by members of the local community including Eric Linge, who with his brothers, Noel and Stanley, had saved, as Mr Bocking told the assembled crowd: "more lives than anyone really recognised", and Dept Liuetenant David Goddard who was representing King Charles III. Glenys Tombleson, accompanied by her daughter Sharon Frohawk, laid a wreath on behalf of her cousin who was the sister of Peter Beckerton who was posthumously decorated for his bravery and whose name appears on the Flood Memorial.
Twenty five people from the village died that night and Mr Bocking read their names before wreaths were laid by the Dept Liuetenant, Mrs Tombleson, David himself, Eric Linge and Stuart Dark MBE.
A two minute silence and the singing of Abide With Me, and closing prayers concluded the service after which the assembly repaired to the Memorial Hall.
Prince William was the surprise visitor to the Memorial Hall exhibition, and he spent time talking to the survivors and heroes from 1953.