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Honouring Burnley's war heroes

Release date: 
Monday, 31 July, 2017

The 100th anniversary of the beginning of the battle of Passchendale has been marked by the laying of commemorative crosses.

The wooden crosses were laid at the war memorial in Towneley in respect of the 41 men from Burnley who were killed on the first day of the battle.

The borough has held a number of events to mark important “milestones” as part of the centenary commemorations around the First World War.

The next major event as part of the borough’s programme of ‘respectful remembrance’ will be held on Saturday 2nd September to remember two Burnley soldiers who were awarded the highest military honour.

Hugh Colvin and Thomas Whitham were awarded the Victoria Cross for their bravery during the conflict.

A ceremony will be held in the town’s Peace Garden, outside the Central Library, from 11am. It will centre on the unveiling of commemorative paving stones in honour of the men. The event will feature students from Thomas Whitham Sixth Form Centre and a Guard of Honour of the Coldstream Guards. Members of the public are invited to attend.

Councillor Lian Pate, who is Burnley Council’s Armed Forces Champion and Chair of the local Armed Forces Community Covenant, said: “It’s important that Burnley remembers and commemorates the contribution of soldiers from our borough who served in the First World War.”

During the Battle of Passchendaele, an estimated 245,000 allied and 215,000 German casualties (dead, wounded or missing) fell during approximately 100 days of heavy fighting for a movement of the front line of only 8 kilometres. The centenary of the battle has been marked with large-scale ceremonies in the Belgian town of Ypres.

 

 

 

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