We shall remember - a time to reflect 1914-2014

Flags are lowered in tribute at the Garden of Remembrance, Todmorden
Flags are lowered in tribute at the Garden of Remembrance, Todmorden

It was an anniversary not be be forgotten, and one of the biggest attendances in recent memory gathered to remember and reflect at Todmorden’s Garden of Remembrance last Sunday, in a year which marked the centenary of the outbreak of the Great War.

The parade and service, which saw townspeople of all ages gather to hear a service led by Vicar of Todmorden, Canon Owen Page, was a time to reflect on that most terrible of conflicts, and remember those from the town who had made the ultimate sacrifice across the world since.

The figures tell of the first world war’s tragedy - Todmorden lost 659 of its sons in conflicts across Europe, in places like Gallipoli, France and Belgium.

Shade School alone lost 55 of its former scholars, who are remembered on an ornate memorial at the school.

Some, like Lieutenant J. H. J. Barker, are familiar names down the years - Todmorden golfers still play for a trophy named in his memory.

Others are emerging from history thanks to books like The Gallipoli Oak, which tells the story of the Todmorden Territorial Army volunteers who served, and many died, at Gallipoli.