The historic Great Hall was the setting for the event, where the County Council Chairman, Councillor Elaine Still, raised the commonwealth flag, while the Hampshire Fanfare, composed by Jock McKenzie from the Hampshire Music Service, was played by trumpeter, Peter Symonds student Thomas Toledo-Brown.
Commenting following the ceremony, Councillor Still said: “This is a great opportunity for us to show our support and appreciation for the values the Commonwealth upholds, as well as the opportunities offered for friendship and cooperation with fellow Commonwealth citizens, young and old, around the world.”
The Chairman was joined by HM Lord-Lieutenant of Hampshire, Nigel Atkinson, who read a message from Her Majesty the Queen: “Commonwealth Day has a special significance this year as we mark the 70th anniversary of the London Declaration, when nations of the Commonwealth agreed to move forward together as free and equal members. The vision and sense of connection that inspired the signatories has stood the test of time, and the Commonwealth continues to grow, adapting to address contemporary needs.”
Commonwealth Day celebrates how friendship, goodwill and collaboration among the culturally diverse 53 member nations can be harnessed to promote peace and prosperity to improve the lives of the 2.4 billion people who live there.