FOR a moment, the city came to a standstill.

Everyday life came to a temporary halt as Durham paused to remember those who did not come home.

The city marked Remembrance Day, firstly in sombre reflection at Durham Cathedral, where bugles sounded to mark the moment of the Armistice, and then again during a parade through the city streets.

Spectators burst into spontaneous applause as the parade reached the Market Place, where marchers saluted the Durham Light Infantry statue, its base covered in poppy wreaths.

Parade organiser Arthur Lockyear MBE said: “I was pleased to see so many people, the crowds were quite deep all the way.

“It would be dreadful if we failed to acknowledge the sacrifice made by thousands of men and women.

“It is solemn, but it isn’t a funeral: it’s an appreciation of the Armed Forces past, present and future and people certainly seem to feel proud to be part of it”.

After the traditional cathedral service, the parade formed up on Palace Green in bright autumn sunshine, led by a 60-strong detachment from The Rifles.

Behind them came some of the Armed Forces’ best-known regiments including the Royal Dragoon Guards and the Parachute Regiment.

Proudly marching for the first time in 60 years was a detachment of the newly-reformed 607 (County of Durham) Squadron Royal Auxiliary Air Force, based at RAF Leeming.

Joining them were representatives of the emergency services, prison service, cadets and veterans’ organisations, marching together through the city’s narrow cobbled streets, flanked by large crowds of old soldiers and young families.

As it entered the Market Place, the parade was met by the Band and Bugles of Durham Army Cadet Force, who played Pack Up Your Troubles In Your Old Kit-Bag, a song forever associated with the First World War.

But among the crowd were survivors of more modern conflicts: ex-servicemen wearing campaign medals from Korea and the South Atlantic.

The Officer Commanding the parade, Major Daryl Dowdal, a veteran of Afghanistan, and company Commander of D Rifles Company at Gilesgate Armoury said: “We are certainly very proud to be leading this great parade through the streets of Durham on Remembrance Sunday as we pay our respects to all who have given their lives in two world wars and in so many conflicts before and since.

“Many of the service men and women on parade will no doubt be remembering friends and colleagues who did not return from Afghanistan and Iraq”.

Afterwards, soldiers posed for photographs with well-wishers beside the city’s landmarks and normal life resumed. But below the DLI statue, the poppies lie as a reminder of those for whom life did not return to normal.