On 22 February 1919, the Royal Army Chaplains' Department will celebrate 100 years from the time King George V bestowed the prefix 'Royal' to their name in recognition of its outstanding service and sacrifice during the First World War. His granddaughter, Her Majesty The Queen, will attend a special service of commemoration with the entire Army chaplaincy community, to mark this auspicious anniversary.
During the service, a new Book of Remembrance and Roll of Honour detailing the 315 Army chaplains who have died in the service of others will be blessed. The Book will subsequently be laid up in the Royal Memorial Chapel Sandhurst where its pages will be regularly turned.
In keeping with recognizing the 75th anniversary of the D-Day landings, the processional cross used in the service will be the one used by Reverend Sandy Reynolds, Chaplain to the 120th Anti-Aircraft Regiment, Royal Artillery during the Second World War. Reynolds landed on D + 1 on Gold Beach and began services as soon as he could in a makeshift chapel built by Royal Canadian Engineers of the 3rd Canadian Infantry Division. The Canadian Sappers also fashioned a processional cross from German Copper modelled on one they found in a local destroyed church. The Reverend Reynolds continued to use the cross through France, Belgium, Holland and Germany and took it home with him to England.
After the war, Reynolds continued to serve in the Territorial Army. At some point in his career, he donated the cross to the parish of Brown Candover in Hampshire. The Royal British Legion used the cross on both the 40th and 50th Festivals of Remembrance of D-Day and has been kindly lent for the centenary service with the permission of the Reverend Reynold’s daughter Georgina Spencer.