THOUSANDS of buns will be launched at residents next month as part of a town's efforts to honour the centenary of the end of the First World War.

The unique Abingdon tradition, which dates back to 1761 and the coronation of King George III, sees the town mark major royal and national occasions by hurling buns off the roof of its County Hall to crowds in the Market Place opposite.

It will be part of a weekend of Armistice events on November 10 and 11, which will include a roll of honour reading, concert to raise funds for the Royal British Legion as well as the traditional Remembrance Sunday gathering at the war memorial and civic procession through the centre of Abingdon.

The town will first come together on November 3 at St Helen's Church for a Festival of Remembrance, with music by The Waterloo Band and Bugles of The Rifles.

It will focus on the role that Abingdon played in the war and look at individual sacrifices made by soldiers from the town.

Abingdon sent more than 1,000 men to war, while Abingdon School sent 374 masters and boys. Townsfolk would win more than 60 gallantry medals, while the school, a recruiting ground for officers, would win awards of the highest order including The Victoria Cross to Sgt Edward John Mott.

The festival will include a tribute to him and letters from the front read by cadets from the Oxfordshire army cadets, Abingdon detachment.

The Waterloo Band and Bugles of The Rifles will play a range of music suitable for the occasion. The band, based at Edward Brooks Barracks, Abingdon, comprises Army Reservists from all over the south of England.

All hold down additional jobs ranging from teachers, translators to train drivers, electricians and plumbers.

It is one of the busiest and largest reserve bands in the country, and completed more than 70 engagements last year both at home and abroad. This the first time it will play in Abingdon.

Clare Oldfield, Abingdon Poppy Appeal organiser, said: “Abingdon has a proud tradition of supporting the poppy, raising almost £90,000 in the past two years. I am sure that once again the town will stand tall and say thank you to all those brave soldiers who sacrificed their lives for us.”

The festival is sponsored by Abingdon Royal British Legion, Heyfordian Travel, MDM print and design and the Vale of the White Horse district council.

Tickets for the festival cost £10 and are available from Abingdon Royal British Legion in Spring Road, Frend and Co jewellers and The Bookstore in the precinct.

A full list of Remembrance events is available via