Anger after ice-cream van disrupts remembrance service in Minchinhampton

First published in News Stroud News and Journal: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter

A WAR veteran who tried to drive an ice-cream van, while honking his horn, through a crowd paying their respects at a Remembrance Sunday service was turned upon and had his windscreen cracked by angry bystanders who were appalled at his "atrocious" behaviour.

The 76-year old man, who himself had served in Malaya, tried to drive the Winstones Ice Cream van along the High Street through the crowds who had gathered for the wreath laying ceremony and the two-minute silence at Minchinhampton's Market Square on Sunday, November 10.

When he was unable to pass through the crowds the driver sat in the van with his engine running but quickly ran out of patience and started trying to push the crowd out of the way using the vehicle.

Parish councillor Roy Nicholas, who has attended the ceremony in Market Square for more than 50 years, said: "I have never witnessed such a blatant disregard of what people were commemorating.

"He was asked to stop but took no notice.

"Others were banging on the sides of the vehicle and the windscreen cracked.

"It was Remembrance Sunday, he knew there was a war memorial in the town and he knew that people would be gathered around it.

"This man’s behaviour was despicable.

"If it were not for the bravery of these men the chance of him having the freedom to sell his ice cream would be doubtful.

"His conduct was atrocious."

The service began at 10.50am and included the naming of the fallen, a two minute silence, wreath laying, prayers and a dedication, finishing around 11.15am.

Although the road was not officially closed a diversion had been put in place via Friday Street and Tetbury Street.

The driver's bosses said they were baffled at his despicable behaviour.

A spokesman for Winstones Ice Cream said: "We are dismayed to hear of the inappropriate and disrespectful behaviour by a van driver at the end of Minchinhampton Remembrance Day service.

"We unreservedly apologise to all who were present and for the offence caused. We have always supported Poppy Day and The Royal British Legion and all that the rememberance day stands for.

"We are completely baffled at these out-of-character actions by a 76-year old ex-serviceman who served on active service in Malaya who clearly should have turned his engine off until the service was completely finished.

"He was frightened by a small group of people who were abusive and aggressive smashing his windscreen and this is why he tried to drive away.

"We are grateful to the police who were on hand and stopped things from getting further out of hand.

"In the cold light of day both parties should feel ashamed of their actions and their disrespectful behaviour."

Comments (11)

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2:54pm Wed 27 Nov 13

joesoapsbrother says...

This story might have had a tad more credibility if were not two weeks + out of date. And to devote the comment column as well. Please!
This story might have had a tad more credibility if were not two weeks + out of date. And to devote the comment column as well. Please! joesoapsbrother
  • Score: 3

5:42pm Wed 27 Nov 13

aaronlewis_122 says...

Like many people probably reading this ridiculous story, I have known the Winstone family for years. I've always found them to be a passionate and considerate bunch, they supported my local school charity days with free product and vouchers for many years. With this in mind I'm sure they are very upset having learnt about the incident on remembrance Sunday. But what utter tosh, is this the SNJ's excuse for journalism these days!?

If Hayley Mortimer and Sue Smith were intending to write one sided drivel and portray Winstons as bad people then they have achieved their aims. They should both be ashamed of printing such one sided rubbish. Does Mortimer not understand what harm such poor journalism can do!? I only hope that people ignore this terrible article and comment and continue to support the family and their great business.
Like many people probably reading this ridiculous story, I have known the Winstone family for years. I've always found them to be a passionate and considerate bunch, they supported my local school charity days with free product and vouchers for many years. With this in mind I'm sure they are very upset having learnt about the incident on remembrance Sunday. But what utter tosh, is this the SNJ's excuse for journalism these days!? If Hayley Mortimer and Sue Smith were intending to write one sided drivel and portray Winstons as bad people then they have achieved their aims. They should both be ashamed of printing such one sided rubbish. Does Mortimer not understand what harm such poor journalism can do!? I only hope that people ignore this terrible article and comment and continue to support the family and their great business. aaronlewis_122
  • Score: -1

6:47pm Wed 27 Nov 13

Debscourt says...

What is the editor playing at. That comment section and this article! Would have helped if either journalist or editor actually witnessed events, instead of quoting 'badger eyebrows' Cllr Roy Nicholas, who I suspect was not a Winstones ice Cream lover to begin with
What is the editor playing at. That comment section and this article! Would have helped if either journalist or editor actually witnessed events, instead of quoting 'badger eyebrows' Cllr Roy Nicholas, who I suspect was not a Winstones ice Cream lover to begin with Debscourt
  • Score: -1

7:20pm Wed 27 Nov 13

PocketSquare says...

I can not understand why aaronlewis_122's comments are so profusely harsh towards the reporter who wrote this article. As I see it, a five paragraph response from Winstones is fairly substantial right of reply. If anything this is an example of good old fashioned by the book journalism.

In terms of its newsworthiness, it happened, it affected people on both sides of the story, therefore it is of legitimate public interest. Personally I'm glad that the SNJ continues to provide quality news gathering in the Stroud district. I say carry on Hayley Mortimer and Sue Smith - the only drivel here is contained in the comments above.
I can not understand why aaronlewis_122's comments are so profusely harsh towards the reporter who wrote this article. As I see it, a five paragraph response from Winstones is fairly substantial right of reply. If anything this is an example of good old fashioned by the book journalism. In terms of its newsworthiness, it happened, it affected people on both sides of the story, therefore it is of legitimate public interest. Personally I'm glad that the SNJ continues to provide quality news gathering in the Stroud district. I say carry on Hayley Mortimer and Sue Smith - the only drivel here is contained in the comments above. PocketSquare
  • Score: 3

7:36am Thu 28 Nov 13

joesoapsbrother says...

PocketSquare sounds like he/she is on a friendly payroll.
PocketSquare sounds like he/she is on a friendly payroll. joesoapsbrother
  • Score: -2

8:14am Thu 28 Nov 13

Crow says...

yes, vee must suppress zee truth, the same as we do in zee dairy industry,,.,

*rolls eyes*

If it happened why not report it. We are not in GO's 1984 yet..
yes, vee must suppress zee truth, the same as we do in zee dairy industry,,., *rolls eyes* If it happened why not report it. We are not in GO's 1984 yet.. Crow
  • Score: 0

8:15am Thu 28 Nov 13

Crow says...

I feel sorry for the driver personally....just got a bit confused, or something.
I feel sorry for the driver personally....just got a bit confused, or something. Crow
  • Score: 0

11:20am Thu 28 Nov 13

PocketSquare says...

@ joesoapsbrother Ha, if only I were! Unfortunately my comments were just my humble opinion nothing more.
@ joesoapsbrother Ha, if only I were! Unfortunately my comments were just my humble opinion nothing more. PocketSquare
  • Score: 0

7:39pm Sat 30 Nov 13

roynicholas says...

I was there, the van actually drove into me and yes I am a lover Winstone's ice cream especially their honey an ginger.
I was there, the van actually drove into me and yes I am a lover Winstone's ice cream especially their honey an ginger. roynicholas
  • Score: -1

7:55pm Sat 30 Nov 13

chrisrainbow says...

I can reveal that the chap involved in this scandal,was non other than FRANK WINSTONE,so we all know what to do when we want ice cream. walls are very good I am told.hope it cost a lot to repair your van ****
I can reveal that the chap involved in this scandal,was non other than FRANK WINSTONE,so we all know what to do when we want ice cream. walls are very good I am told.hope it cost a lot to repair your van **** chrisrainbow
  • Score: 0

11:43am Tue 3 Dec 13

dimreepr says...

The salient points of this story:
1 He fought in the war and so has every right to decide whether or not to respect the silence; basically the freedom he and, so many, others fought so hard to maintain.
2 The article doesn’t make it clear if he was attacked before he started to try and drive through the crowd given the families response.
3 The article didn’t include a response from the man involved; we therefore have no idea if his actions could or couldn’t be considered legitimate/mitigated
.
People are all too often angered and outraged blindly.
The salient points of this story: 1 He fought in the war and so has every right to decide whether or not to respect the silence; basically the freedom he and, so many, others fought so hard to maintain. 2 The article doesn’t make it clear if he was attacked before he started to try and drive through the crowd given the families response. 3 The article didn’t include a response from the man involved; we therefore have no idea if his actions could or couldn’t be considered legitimate/mitigated . People are all too often angered and outraged blindly. dimreepr
  • Score: 0

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