VIDEO: Hundreds attend moving Sheffield war service

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  • by Ellen Beardmore

Hundreds of people attended a special service in Sheffield today to mark the 100th anniversary of the start of World War One, which falls tomorrow.

Sheffield Cathedral was full to capacity at around 600 people, including veterans, residents and dignitaries.

The ceremony was part of many events taking place around South Yorkshire to remember the beginning of the war.

On Monday, August 4, it will be precisely 100 years to the day that Great Britain declared war on Germany, and communities are coming together to remember the soldiers who fought and died for their country.

Bishop of Doncaster Peter Burrows told the congregation: “We are all connected to the war, either through our family history or because of the way it changed the history of our communities.”

Young police, sea, air and Army cadets lined the entrance to the cathedral as visitors walked in.

Among the order of service was a poem written by Sergeant John William Streets, who volunteered for the Sheffield City Battalion of the York and Lancaster Regiment on September 10, 1914.

He was killed in action on the first day of the Battle of the Somme on July 1, 1916. His poem was read out by the Lord Lieutenant of South Yorkshire.

Lord Mayor of Sheffield Coun Peter Rippon said after the ceremony: “It was very moving to commemorate the loss of millions of lives in World War One - we should never forget.”

D-Day Charlie Hill, aged 89 and of Gleadless Valley, added: “It was a wonderful ceremony, very touching really.

“I was thinking what I’ve seen on the television about those who served, and how they suffered.

“We had it bad in the Second World War but I don’t think you can compare.”

Other events include an event from 9pm to 11pm tomorrow at the Victoria Centre, Stafford Road.

From 9:30pm there will be a community singalong, and from 10pm a candle light vigil with poems, retro photographs and silent memories.

Communities will be taking part in the Royal British Legion’s national Lights Out initiative, in which people are being asked to turn off their lights and use candles instead for an hour between 10pm and 11pm.

See tomorrow’s Star for more on this story.




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