Cyril Elliott: Funeral for WW2 Normandy veteran

A piper and flagbearers followed Cyril Elliott's coffin to Shiregreen Cemetery
A piper and flagbearers followed Cyril Elliott's coffin to Shiregreen Cemetery

The funeral of one of the last Normandy veterans of World War Two has taken place in Sheffield.

Cyril Elliott, who died at 103, drove lorries and helped liberate prisoners in World War Two, according to the now-disbanded Sheffield branch of the Normandy Veterans Association.

Councillor Denise Fox said the number of people who attended was both "heart-breaking [and] heart-warming".

The funeral took place at Shiregreen Cemetery at 14:30 GMT.

Mr Elliott, who died in October, joined the Sheffield branch of the Normandy Veterans Association in 2014 but it was disbanded in 2021 because of dwindling numbers, said former branch secretary Graham Askham.

During the war Mr Elliott drove lorries through Normandy into north-west Europe, carrying Bailey Bridges which were portable, pre-fabricated, truss bridges used extensively by the British military.

After the war, Mr Elliott spent more than 30 years delivering post around his home city of Sheffield, Mr Askham said.

More than 100 people attended the funeral, including military veterans and civic dignitaries.

Children from nearby Hinde House School attended along with Sheffield Sea Cadets and representatives from Royal Mail where Mr Elliott worked for over 30 years.

The hearse was followed into the cemetery by a piper and flagbearers, and a bugle played as the coffin - covered by a flag embroidered with the word Normandy - was lowered into the ground.

Ms Fox, who was Sheffield's Lord Mayor in 2016, said it was "heart-warming" to see the number of people who turned out at the funeral.

"It's heart-breaking, but on the other hand it's lovely that people have taken the time out to come and pay their respects," she said.

Ms Fox added that Mr Elliott was "humble and quiet".

She said it was especially important that young people, represented at the funeral by school pupils and sea cadets, saw the respect Cyril and his comrades inspired.

"We should never forget," she said.

"The world would be a different place without them taking part in the World Wars.

"Who knows what it would be like if it wasn't for them."

Cyril Elliot's funeral, Sheffield
The hearse carrying Cyril Elliot's coffin to Shiregreen Cemetery
Sheffield Sea Cadets at the funeral of 103-year-old Normandy veteran Cyril Elliott
Denise Fox said the stories of the Normandy veteran could teach young people a lot about WW2

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