A poignant ceremony was held in Leyland today to mark the centenary of the outbreak of the First World War.
A respectful gathering, including representatives of the armed forces and war veterans, watched the Mayor of South Ribble, Coun Graham Walton, lower the flags flying above the Civic Centre to half-mast before unveiling a plaque and planting a commemorative tree.
The Mayor and council leader, Coun Margaret Smith, each read poems and led moments of quiet reflection during the ceremony, which was part of a four-year programme of events and activities organised by South Ribble Council to remember all those who suffered and lost their lives during the First World War.
A bugler from Leyland Band played the Last Post and The Reveille to end proceedings.
Coun Walton, said: “I was honoured to take part in such a moving ceremony. We should never forget the huge sacrifices that people made during the First World War.
“We should always remember them and be thankful to them, and this tree will stand as a permanent reminder to us all.”
South Ribble Council’s Armed Forces Champion, Coun Alan Ogilvie, added: “We’re working hard to ensure we remember all the tremendous efforts of our residents during the First World War, by organising a series of events and projects.
“The commemorative events we’ve held so far have been tremendously supported by the community, and it was again touching to have so many people join us to remember those who lost their lives in the conflict.”
- To see more messages from dignitaries and a list of confirmed events and projects planned throughout this centenary year, see the Leyland Guardian’s special WW1 anniversary supplement, which is in shops tomorrow (Tuesday).