The Great War
Programme of events unveiled to mark Great War centenary across the Causeway Coast and Glens
Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council has unveiled a programme of events to commemorate the centenary of World War One.
Working in partnership with the Royal British Legion, it will culminate in a series of co-ordinated beacon lighting ceremonies on Armistice Day (November 11th) followed by a similar event on Rathlin Island on November 18th.
Before then, exhibitions, dramatic performances, concerts and military displays will combine to tell the story of the Great War and how it came to an end 100 years ago. All of the events are free and open to everyone.
The programme was officially launched against the backdrop of Aghadowey War Memorial.
The Mayor of Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council, Councillor Joan Baird OBE said: “As one of the first memorials of its kind, the monument in Aghadowey provided a very fitting backdrop as we prepare to remember events from a century ago. We have a duty to ensure the sacrifices of the fallen, both then and now, are never forgotten. Our Borough, like many other areas, was greatly touched by the outbreak of war and some of our unique stories will be showcased through this important programme of events.”
Councillor Trevor Clarke, chair of Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council’s Great War Working Group said: “As a Council we recognise the legacy of the war every year during the Remembrance period and it is fitting that this important anniversary is given the prominence it deserves. In many of the Borough’s towns and villages, War Memorials act as a permanent reminder of those who have died so we can live in peace. This commemorative programme of events will allow us to reflect on those who have made the ultimate sacrifice while also allowing us to give thanks for how this has shaped our world today.”
A spokesperson for the Royal British Legion said: “At the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month in the French town of Redonthes, Germany signed an Armistice with the Allies which brought an end to the First World War. During the four years of war there were 744,000 deaths and 1675,000 wounded. The Irish Divisions lost over 49,400 and at the Battle of the Somme over one million soldiers were killed. 30,000 of these were in just one day. With this in mind, we are inviting people to join us to in remembering all those that paid the ultimate sacrifice for our future.”
The programme of events follows a Notion of Motion proposed by Alderman Alan Robinson and seconded by Councillor Mark Fielding that ‘this Council pays tribute to all those from our community who served on the Centenary of the End of the Great War’ and ‘acknowledges with grateful thanks those who paid the ultimate price for our freedom’.
Highlights include an appearance by the Band of Her Majesty’s Royal Marines in Holy Trinity Church, Ballycastle on Friday 22nd June. The Limavady-based Trench Memorial Flute Band will play an Armistice Day Centenary Concert in Roe Valley Arts and Cultural Centre on October 26th.
Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council’s Museum Services have organised a special exhibition which offers a fascinating insight in to the centenary of the Royal Air Force and its connection to the Borough. Following an earlier display in Ballymoney Town Hall, it opens in Coleraine Town Hall from June 26th – 30th and Green Lane Museum in Limavady from July 3rd – September 30th. In November, Ballymoney Museum will host a 1918 exhibition which examines the legacy of international events on local people and places while Coleraine Town Hall will host a World War One display organised by the RBL.