Derbyshire urged to light candles for WW1 commemoration

The horror of the trenches in the Great War1914-18. World War One
The horror of the trenches in the Great War1914-18. World War One

The sacrifice made by our region’s World War One heroes is being commemorated with a lights out campaign this evening, Monday, August 4, to mark the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of the conflict.

Villages and towns had their communities torn apart by heartbreaking losses after Britain’s declaration of war against Germany on August 4, 1914.

The same places have already begun to remember those who fought on the frontline and the homefront with events this August.

And tonight many more are being urged by the Royal British Legion to turn their lights off and to burn candles from 10pm to 11pm, tonight, Monday, August 4, to reflect on British statesman Sir Edward Grey’s prophecy that “The lamps are going out all over Europe”.

War erupted after the assassination of the Austro-Hungarian Archduke Franz Fredinand by a Serbian which led to Austria’s invasion of Serbia and Austrian ally Germany’s invasion of France and Belgium which pulled Great Britain in.

Serbia was also supported by Russia.

Derbyshire communities were torn apart with massive losses until the Armistice of November 11, 1918, when the war officially ended with Germany defeated. Stories of heroism have since shown how our proud region continues to remember those who fought for peace and they will never be forgotten.

Sgt Fred Greaves, who received the Victoria Cross, will be remembered with others from Chesterfield, Mastin Moor, Brimington and Killamarsh where he had ties.

A service will be held at S.S. Augustine’s Church, on Derby Road, on August 3, to honour those from the parish who fought including 72 from the Bryan Donkin firm who were killed.

Bakewell’s Royal British Legion memorial garden in the Bath Gardens will host a service on August 4, remembering the 73 from Bakewell who died.

Alfreton Town Council has also organised an event on August 2, at Firs Garden, Alfreton. For event details see pages 44 and 45.

Chesterfield Borough Council leader John Burrows said: “We should all seek out these activities and give a little of our time today for those who gave their tomorrows.”