Burnham-On-Sea church bell ringer Roger Packer

Burnham-On-Sea’s St Andrew’s Church marked the death of HRH The Duke of Edinburgh on Saturday with 99 chimes of the church bell, once for each year of his life.

Following Friday’s announcement of the passing of Prince Philip, Burnham’s St Andrew’s Church rang a half muffled tolling bell at 12 mid-day.

A small gathering of residents turned out to listen as the church’s bell captain Roger Packer, pictured, who has been in the role for 60 years, led the ceremony with Isaac O’Shea,  pictured below.

Burnham-On-Sea church bell ringer Isaac O'Shea

Burnham-On-Sea and Highbridge Town Council has opened an online book of condolence for local people to pay their respects and post messages.

It comes as Burnham-On-Sea and Highbridge’s town flags have been lowered to half-mast following the announcement from Buckingham Palace that the Prince has died aged 99.

In Burnham-On-Sea, the town flag next to the fountain in Old Station Approach has been lowered by the Town Council’s Cllr Peter Clayton, as pictured below.

The town flag in Highbridge’s Church Street was also lowered to half mast, as pictured below.

Burnham-On-Sea's town flag lowered to half-mast in memory for Prince Philip

Burnham and Highbridge Mayor Cllr Mike Facey says: “It is with great sadness that we have learnt of the death of The Duke of Edinburgh Prince Philip who served and supported his country over many decades with the upmost dedication and distinction. He was a much-loved member of our monarchy and will be sorely missed.”

“On behalf of the people of Burnham-On-Sea and Highbridge, I wish to convey our deepest sympathy and thoughts to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and the rest of the Royal Family at this terribly sad time.”

Chair of Somerset County Council, Cllr Nigel Taylor, adds: “On behalf of our residents, Somerset County Council offers deepest sympathies to the Royal family on the passing of The Duke of Edinburgh.”

“Details on books of condolence, church services, floral tributes and funeral arrangements will follow in due course.”

A spokesperson for Sedgemoor District Council adds: “On behalf of Sedgemoor District Council, the chairman of Sedgemoor District Council would like to offer our heartfelt condolences to HM The Queen and the Royal Family. Our thoughts are with them at this sad time.”

The flag at Buckingham Palace was lowered to half-mast and a notice was posted on the gates following the announcement of the duke’s death.

People also placed flowers outside the palace, while crowds gathered at Windsor Castle.

Justin Welby, the Archbishop of Canterbury, said the duke “consistently put the interests of others ahead of his own and, in so doing, provided an outstanding example of Christian service”.

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