Our picture at the flag-raising ceremony shows EDDC Chairman Councillor Graham Godbeer and Vice-Chairman Councillor Christine Drew with civic representatives, flanked by Royal British Legion standard bearers.

Flag-raising ceremony at Knowle is one of hundreds worldwide

East Devon District Council played its part in a national celebration of Commonwealth Day this morning (Monday 9 March) when the Commonwealth Flag was raised outside the council’s Knowle headquarters in Sidmouth.

Councillor Graham Godbeer, EDDC Chairman, performed the ceremony, assisted by Mrs Christine Drew, Vice Chairman, watched by civic representatives of local towns and supported by members of the Royal British Legion.

A special message of good wishes from Her Majesty The Queen to all those taking part was read out by Councillor Godbeer, along with a personal message from His Excellency Kamalesh Sharma, Secretary-General of the Commonwealth, and a specially written Commonwealth Affirmation, before the raising of the Commonwealth Flag at 10.00hrs.

In a common act of witness around the globe, members of this great family of nations reaffirmed the commitment of all Commonwealth member states to democracy, development, and respect for diversity.


The East Devon flag-raising was among 730 ceremonies around the UK, Channel Islands and Isle of Man, as well as many other places worldwide. For the first time in maritime history, the Commonwealth Flag was to be raised onboard all ships belonging to the fleets of the world’s leading cruise lines, P&O & Cunard Line, wherever they might be travelling in the world on Monday morning.

This unique initiative, now in its second year, is again catching the imagination of thousands of participants from all walks of life, inspiring them to join with others throughout the Commonwealth. As a collective public expression of commitment to the Commonwealth, it enables participants to show appreciation for the values the Commonwealth upholds, and the opportunities offered for friendship and co-operation with fellow Commonwealth citizens around the world.