Published: Monday, 07th July 2014

Oldham Council is urging residents to line the streets and be part of a Civic Procession and service to commemorate 100 years since the start of World War I.

The Mayor of Oldham, Councillor Fida Hussain will lead the parade, which takes place on Sunday, July 13.

Ex-service and voluntary organisations will be assembling at 1pm at New Radcliffe Street Car Park, next to the Tommyfield pub in Oldham Town Centre, to set off at 1.30pm.

The Royal Regiment of Fusiliers and the Mayor, together with invited dignitaries, will then parade through the Town Centre towards the Parish Church where they will be joined by residents of all ages for a service starting at 2pm. Standard Bearers will provide a Guard of Honour up the church steps.

For this special occasion the Memorial Drums, which are usually on display in the Civic Centre, will act as an altar.

This harks back to their use on the battlefield when a chaplain would use them as a memorial altar while he held a service.

Oldham Music Centre Youth Choir will perform at the service and images of armed forces personnel will be on display throughout. Cllr Hussain will also speak about life in Oldham at the start of the war, and its impact on the town.

At the end of the service a memorial tree - with three branches to represent the Army, Navy and Royal Flying Core - with the trunk representing Oldham will be planted in the church gardens.  A granite memorial stone along with bench, donated by Life for Life, will also be unveiled.  

Members of the 75 Engineer Regiment, which has Freedom of the Borough status, will serve refreshments while the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers perform.

Cllr Hussain said: “This Civic event, along with events and activities that will take place throughout the year, provides an opportunity for people of all ages to come together and mark the start of the First World War.

“I would urge residents from all corners of the borough to come along on July 13 to show their support for service personnel past and present.”

The event has been organised as part of the local authority’s commitment to honouring the contribution Oldham people made to the war effort.

As part of a campaign to bring people from across the borough and beyond together in remembrance we have launched the website www.oldhamremembers.org.uk

If you have organised an event and would like it adding to our listings page on the ‘Oldham Remembers’ website, send an email to oldhamremembers@oldham.gov.uk

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