Whats On Oakley


Edward Brooks VC Commemoration

Edward Brooks.jpg

Date: 28/4/2017
Location: St. Mary's Church, Oakley
Time: 10.00 am
Contact: liz@lizashley.plus.com
Description: Only two men awarded a Victoria Cross in WW1 were born in Bucks. One, Edward Brooks, was born in Oakley. His valiant capture of, single handedly, a German machine gun was recognised by the VC. The MoD has commissioned a commemorative stone for all WW1 VC recipients and Brooks' will be unveiled on 28 April 2017. There is an associated two-day exhibition in Oakley Village Hall (28 & 29 April) to celebrate VC recipients, Oakley families and to display much WW1 era memorabilia. The exhibition will be of interest to historians, military historians and social historians, as well as everyone in our neighbourhood. Everyone is welcome to the ceremony at St Mary's Church and we hope for many visitors to the exhibition on the Friday or Saturday. Contact: Liz Ashley, liz@lizashley.plus.com




Under the DCLG (Department of Communities and Local Government) initiative to honour all First World War winners of the Victoria Cross, Oakley village will unveil an engraved commemorative stone in the churchyard of St. Mary’s Church, Oakley, Buckinghamshire on Friday 28 April 2017.


These co-ordinating instructions deliver the Programme, timelines and administrative arrangements for this Event.



The Unveiling Ceremony will take place from 10:00 at St. Mary’s Church, Oakley, Bucks, HP18 9QF


After the ceremony, all attendees are invited to visit the World War One exhibition in Oakley
Village Hall.


PLEASE NOTE: B4011 Bicester Road will be closed from 09:30 to 11:45 on 28 April.



v  09:30               The B4011, Bicester Road from Manor Road to Brill Road will be closed to traffic

v  10:05               All official Guests, Councillors, Clergy, Speakers and other spectators in place

v  10:10               Ceremony starts

v  11:15               Ceremony Ends

v  11:45               B4011 will re-open


Programme (Dry-weather programme)

The ceremony will start at 10:10 and will last approximately 65 minutes

v  10:05               All Official Guests, Councillors, Clergy, Speakers and other spectators in
                         place in St. Mary’s churchyard

v  10:10               The Guards of Honour

v  10:14               Bugler – Major Heaver will sound a fanfare

v  10:15               Arrival of Sir Henry Aubrey-Fletcher, the Lord Lieutenant of Buckinghamshire

                         Mr John Mole, Chairman of Oakley Parish Council (OPC)

v  10:18               OPC chairman Mr John Mole to address the Event

v  10:26               Hymn – I Vow to Thee My Country – supported by the Oakley Church Choir

v  10:30               The Rev David Kaboleh to conduct ‘field’ service to include a short
                         playlet by the children of Oakley school

v  10:48               Résumé of Edward Brooks’ life by Mr Rod Ellis

v  10:58               The Citation of Edward Brooks VC is read by Colonel Simon Plummer

v  11.00               OPC Chairman Mr John Mole announces that the Commemorative Stone will be

v                           11:01            Sir Henry Aubrey-Fletcher and Mr Keith Brooks will unveil the Commemorative
                         Stone by removing and folding The Rifles Regimental flag

v  11:02               Prayers led by The Rev David Kaboleh

v  11:04               Reading of the names of the fallen Oakley men by John Mole

v  11:06               Exhortation by The Royal British Legion

v  11:07               Last Post; 1-minute silence

v  11:10               Reveille sounded by bugle

v  11:11               Dedication (When you go home, tell them of us ..)

v  11:13               Wreaths to be laid by: Lord Lieutenant; Colonel Simon Plummer;
                         OCP Chairman, John Mole; the Brooks family; the scholars from Oakley School
                         for The Fallen

v  11:15               National Anthem [1 verse] and French National Anthem

v  11.17               Guards of Honour march off


Programme (Wet weather programme)

To be published, if necessary, ahead of the event.



B4011 Bicester Road, Oakley will be closed to traffic at 09:30. All attendees should aim to be in Oakley by 09.20. Refreshments will be served after the event at the Village Hall, Oxford Road. Toilets will be open at the Village Hall and adjacent to the church (in Church Close) before and after the event.


Parking: See above and, bearing in mind the closure of the B4011 Bicester Road between Brill Road and Manor Road, it is crucial people allow time to park their cars and walk to the Church.


Parking and other facilities for Invited Dignitaries only will be at Manor Farm, Oakley HP18 9QD. There are two parking areas; Invitees will receive passes for the area applicable to them. After the road closure, access to Manor Farm will not be possible from the east. Please arrive before the road closure.


Depending on weather conditions: if weather conditions are sufficiently dry, there will be parking for the public in the field adjacent to the Church in Church Close field. Access to this car park will be possible from the west until 09:30 only, when the B4011 (Bicester Road) will be closed at the junction with Manor Road. Similarly, access to the Church Close field car park will be available from the east (Brill Road, Thame Road) until 09:30 only. Minimal access might be possible from the east until 09:50 via the Brill Road lay by.


If conditions are wet, parking for the public will be on the Oakley Playing Field, on the Oxford Road. Access is via Lynnens View HP18 9LQ. There will be no access from the east (Brill, Long Crendon, Thame) direction after 09:30, when the B4011 (Bicester Road) is closed. Please use alternative arrangements to access the wet-weather car park after this time (via Worminghall or Touchbridge Farm, Boarstall Road, Brill, HP18 9UJ). (Presumably from the Bicester direction, cars can turn down The Turnpike? Marshal needed here??)


Please check on http://www.oakleyvc.org from Monday 24th April on which car park to use.


If you have special requirements for access or parking, please contact liz@lizashley.plus.com


Marshals will be in each location to direct traffic.



Tiered seating will be available for Invited Dignitaries, the Brooks family and for those with special needs. There will be standing room for other attendees; please be courteous and aware of the needs of those attendees shorter than you. Please do not stand in roped-off areas ahead of, and after, the ceremony.


Sound System

It is proposed that there will be a sound system and loudspeakers to ensure everyone will be able to hear the speeches, the service and the Oakley children. Because of the daylight conditions in the Churchyard, it has proved infeasible to have video feeds.



Dress is to be No.1 Dress for serving officers; suits for others. Medals are to be worn. [Suits for Invited Dignitaries only, not necessarily the public??]



§  John Mole, Chairman of Oakley Parish Council and Chairman of Oakley VC committee


Invited Dignitaries.

§  The Lord Lieutenant, Sir Henry Aubrey-Fletcher

§  The Honourable Mrs C R Soames, Outgoing High Sherriff of Buckinghamshire

§  Mr Peter Kara, High Sheriff of Buckinghamshire

§  Rt Hon John Bercow MP, Speaker of the House of Commons

§  David Lidington MP, Leader of The House of Commons

§  Councillor Valerie Letheren, Chairman of Bucks County Council

§  Councillor Angela Macpherson, BCC Councillor for Grendon Underwood (seat includes Oakley)

§  Councillor Jenny Bloom, Chairman AVDC

§  Councillor Andrew Grant, AVDC Chief Executive

§  Councillor Michael Rand, AVDC Councillor for Oakley Ward

§  The Rev David Kaboleh, Vicar of Oakley, Shabbington, Ickford and Worminghall

§  Brooks Family Members:

o   Keith Brooks, Grandson of Edward Brooks VC

o   Annalize Brooks

o   Other Brooks family

                 RIFLES Regiment

o   Colonel Simon Plummer

o   Captain Rick Fletcher

o   WO2 Roger Webb

o   Mr Mike Marr

o   Major Heaver, Bugler

o   Guard of Honour

§  Royal British Legion

§  French Legion (to be confirmed)


Village Hall Exhibition

A large exhibition will be held in Oakley Village Hall (free entry) from 11:45 until 17:00 on Friday 28 April and 10:00 to 17:00 on Saturday 29 April.


§  Highlights

o   The life of Edward Brooks VC

o   Edward Brooks’ Family Tree

o   Description of Edward Brooks’ brave deed on 28 April 1917

o   Video interview of Keith Brooks talking about his grandfather

o   Diorama of the Fayet battlefield on 28 April 1917

o   Description of the lives of c.23 Oakley, Honeyburgh and Boarstall men who gave their lives for their country in World War One

o   Description of the lives of c.70 Oakley, Honeyburgh and Boarstall men who served their country in World War One

o   Large scale map of Oakley, showing where participants lived

o   The history of the Victoria Cross

o   The story of Albert Ball VC (grandfather of Oakley resident)

o   The story of Jack Cornwall VC, one of youngest recipients of the medal

o   Various memorabilia of weapons, uniforms and medals

o   Other World War One videos, displays and exhibits

o   Refreshments

o   We are attempting to have external WWI equipment in the Playing Field on Saturday 29 April; this has yet to be confirmed.







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