BEAMINSTER’s long-awaited war memorial was unveiled with a poignant reminder from veteran Frank Moore about their importance.

The ailing 90-year-old former soldier gave a moving speech, drawing on his combat experiences at the Battle of Arnhem.

War Memorial committee member Tony Greenham said: “Everybody had a lump in their throat. We were so pleased Frank could come. We were worried that he wouldn’t be able to make it but he did.

“It was his idea way back to have a memorial and he said it was to remember people who had no known grave and this is a way of remembering them.

“He talked about three of his experiences where people were killed in combat. People were spellbound. It got home to people why he thought war memorials were still so important.”

The service was conducted by the Rev David Shearlock, Dean Emeritus of Truro with a bible reading by Michael Conroy.

The crowd were welcomed by the chairman of the war memorial committee Robin Musson who also gave an address.

Mr Moore was helped with the unveiling by families related to the names on the memorial. They also laid poppy wreaths.

Durnovaria Silver Band from Dorchester played the music and there was tea in the town hall after the ceremony.

The campaign to get the war memorial started in 2006.