FAMILY, love and community were the themes chosen by Ledbury's mayor, Cllr Bob Barnes, for his Civic Service on Sunday, July 20.

Around 250 people attended the service at St Michael and All Angels Church, and civic pride and talent was very much on show.

Speaking afterwards, Cllr Barnes said: "I want to thank the community groups that took part, including the Community Brass Band, which played a selection of wartime favourites, and the Ledbury Community Choir, which sang 'You'll Never Walk Alone', and it was absolutely brilliant.

"In this community, people are not alone with their troubles."

Cllr Barnes also praised members of the Ledbury Amateur Dramatic Society, who song a medley of wartime favourites.

"It sounded fantastic," said Cllr Barnes, who attended the service alongside his wife, Carol, the mayoress of Ledbury.

Cllr Barnes also had strong praise for Lauren and Amy Hill, musicians from the John Masefield High School, who played a piano and flute serenade by Beethoven.

And the mayor's son, Malcolm, gave a reading of "The Town" by John Masefield, which describes Ledbury as "a little town of ancient grace".

Mr Barnes' daughter, Dawn Absalom, read "How do I love thee?" by Elizabeth Barrett Browning, who grew up at Hope End, near Wellington Heath, where Cllr Barnes also grew up.

Cllr Barnes said: "The Rev Howard Mayell gave an excellent address on the theme of family, love and service to the community, and all without notes."

"Ledbury is a special place because of the people in it," he added.

The service was attended by the Deputy Lieutenant of Herefordshire, Helen Thomas, and the mayors of Hereford, Bromyard, Leominster, Newent, Droitwich, Pershore and Ross.