Tuesday, 28 September 2021

Derek’s final salute...except that it wasn’t

A SALUTE was supposed to be the last official act by Derek Chivers at Henley’s Remembrance

A SALUTE was supposed to be the last official act by Derek Chivers at Henley’s Remembrance Sunday service,

writes Phil Simms.


But within hours of stepping down from his role assisting standard bearer Brian Hughes, he was asked to continue.

For each of the last 10 annual services Mr Chivers has been handed the standard by Mr Hughes while he laid a wreath at the town hall on behalf of the Henley and Peppard of the Royal British Legion.

Mr Chivers, of Westleigh Drive, Sonning Common, was planning to “retire” because he will be 82 on his next birthday. “I am getting on,” he said. “Normally you don’t salute the standard but as this was going to be my last time I asked Brigadier Malcolm Page if I could and replied ‘of course’.



“But he has since told me that he is 89 and is still involved so I’ve decided to go on and do a bit more. I have been put in the shade by a superior and you don’t go against a brigadier — even in civilian life!”

Mr Chivers served with the Royal Electrical Mechanical Engineers and saw active service in Egypt and Jordan. He also spent four years as a reserve.

After being demobbed, he went into service like his father, who was the royal family’s head chauffer, and he once played golf with George VI.



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