CURRENT soldiers joined dignitaries and war veterans in marking Remembrance Sunday.

Soldiers from the Duke of Lancaster’s Regiment came to Blackburn, Accrington and Burnley where they paraded to each town’s cenotaph before a traditional service.

Remembrance services were also held in Darwen, Great Harwood, Rishton, Altham, Mellor, Whalley, Huncoat, Oswaldtwistle, Hoddlesden, Billington, Baxenden, Padiham, Hapton, Foulridge, Barrowford, Colne, Fence, Brierfield, Blacko, Earby, Barnoldswick, Ramsbottom and Bacup.

Colour Sergeant Rob Jeffries, from the 1st Battalion, who led the soldiers and has served in Bosnia, Kosovo and Iraq during the past 16 years, said: “We not only need to remember the old soldiers who have lost their lives in world war but those who have sacrificed themselves in Ireland, for example.

“The 2nd Battalion lost quite a few soldiers in Iraq, too.

"No matter where we are in the world ,we always do a parade for Remembrance Sunday.”

More than 350 soldiers took part in services across the North West.

Lance Corporal Jade Anthony, 19, from Blackburn, a medic in the 4th Battalion, said: “Remembrance Sunday is not just about remembering the past soldiers but the present friends that have fallen now.

"It is about remembering battles – not just Afghanistan and Iraq but others such as Northern Ireland.

"I am very proud. It is a very big privilege.”

Kingsman Alex Winterburn, 26, from Blackburn, a light machine gunner from One Platoon, said: “It is important to remember people who have died because they have sacrificed their lives. ”

Capt Jon Gilbody, unit spokesperson, added: “Remembrance Sunday is one of the most significant events in the military calendar.

"It is important in this busy world to take time to remember.”

Among the serving soldiers in Burnley was Lance Corporal Danny Fort, from Eastern Avenue.

He said: “Remembrance Sunday is all about the veterans and a mark of respect for the older guys.

"They have been through much worse times than we have and the fact that we stand to remember them is something to be proud of.

“People see it as the time to remember the fallen but I think we should do more of it and maybe have a national day for veterans.”

Liam Wilkinson, originally from Harle Syke, said: “The day is about remembering those who have died in the past.

"I think that people are more supportive now and over past years have been coming out for us.”

Sgt Barry Quinn, from Duke Bar, added: “We have come to commemorate what the veterans did for us in the past because if it was not for those who fought in the world wars, we would not be here.

"I come back to Burnley every month and I see that soldiers always get a lot of respect and recognition.”

The troops followed veterans in the procession, and past and present members of the armed forces were trailed by young cadet soldiers, police, members of the Red Cross and scouts.

The parade was joined at Burnley’s cenotaph by the mayor, Coun Ida Carmichael, and scores who had gathered to pay their respects.