Hundreds of people paid their respects to Bradford’s fallen heroes at a Festival of Remembrance tonight.

Musicians, singers and dancers took to the stage at St George’s Hall during the 67th annual event, held to honour servicemen and women from across the district who lost their lives for their country.

Bradford-born actor Duncan Preston was compere for the evening, which culminated in a Parade of Standards and a Service of Remembrance.

“This is the time to remember all those who have given sacrifice to the nation, some of them the ultimate sacrifice,” he said in his opening address.

“This is a time to express a hope that we can move towards a more peaceful future.”

An audience, including veterans, watched as the City of Bradford Brass Band kicked off proceedings with a powerful rendition of Summon the Dragon.

The group continued to entertain with a number of performances during the evening, which also featured two stunning arias sung by soprano Claire McKay and a session of community singing.

Allerton’s Spotlight Stage School also showcased their talents, with a troupe of dancers performing a ballet to songs from the Sound of Music, before Steeton Male Voice Choir sang What Shall I Do Without My Music, Amazing Grace and You’ll Never Walk Alone.

The crowd was also treated to three songs performed by Abi Uttley and Marc Otway, who make up the group Issimo, as well as a medley of Disney classics and songs from Les Miserables performed by the choir of Clayton CE Primary School.

A Service of Remembrance was then led by the Rev Cannon Ralph Crowe and Father Keiron Walker, including a reading of Laurence Binyon’s lines To The Fallen by Deputy Lieutenant of West Yorkshire Roger Whittaker.

A minute’s silence was held during the sounding of The Last Post, which saw poppy petals fall in memory of servicemen and women who died in conflict.

A ceremonial sunset was performed by members of Keighley Air Cadets, Bradford Sea Cadets and the 67 Yorkshire N&W Air Training Corps, before the Kohima Epitaph was spoken by Dennis Barber, of the 617 Squadron Association.

The service ended with the singing of the National Anthem.

The Lord Mayor of Bradford, Coun Khadim Hussain, said this year’s service marks the 70th anniversary of the Dambusters raid.

He added: “It is, in my view, greatly meaningful to come together as a community and to focus on the enormous debt of gratitude we owe to all those who fought in two world wars, and many more recent conflicts, in pursuit of peace and justice.

“We also pay tribute to those servicemen and women who continue to make personal sacrifices in the service of our nation and express our appreciation for the freedom that their effort secures.”