The fallen of two world wars came back from the dead as part of the launch of a brand new history project that was unveiled as part of WW1 100 Years Remembrance at the weekend.
The eerie silhouette of WW1 soldiers marching to their deaths lit up the side of historic St Nicholas’ Church in High Bradfield whilst ‘There But Not There’ ghost-like Tommies – lifesize and made of see-through Perspex - sat amongst the congregation at a packed service presided over by the Bishop of Sheffield.
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Key soldiers from the area – including Stannington-born Heber Joseph Revitt who became famous after being chosen to blow the ‘last post all clear’ outside the train carriage at Compiegne where the agreement was signed to end WW1 – also paid a surprise visit to the event via actors from the local Stannington Players.
The event – the start of a two week long WW1 100 Years Remembrance – also marked the official unveiling of a Heritage Lottery-funded project to uncover the secrets of the Dungworth and Bradfield area in World War Two.
A specially commissioned ‘Parish Poppy’ sculpture made of spent ammunition shells was also on view for the first time, together with artwork from local schools, and the Bradfield parish magazines of 1918.
Guests included the Lord Lieutenant of South Yorkshire, Andrew Coombe, and the Deputy Lord Mayor of Sheffield, Councillor Tony Downing.
Local army and navy cadets and children from nearby Bradfield Dungworth Primary School also helped with the event in stewarding and welcoming capacities.
Months in the planning, the dramatic remembrance event also included a gun salute, bugler, church bells ringing, and be the start of two weeks of events and activity.
A cascade of poppies made by dementia and Alzheimer patients from Northern General Hospital will also be installed in the church for Remembrance Sunday on 11th November.
Future events include:
Friday 9th November – Doors open 7pm - Music Night Loxley Silver Band & Bradfield Handbell Group tickets available on the door £ 5.00 adults - £ 1.00 Children (No projection lighting)
Saturday 10th November - 10.55am - World War One Remembrance Service War Memorial - Storrs Lane, Stannington, Sheffield, S6 6GY
Sunday 11th November - 10.30am - Remembrance Day Service ; 12.30pm Quarter Peal for Peace
Friday 16th November – Closing Ceremony WW1 100 Years Remembrance with illumination projection from 5.30pm. Bolsterstone Male Voice Choir at 9pm.
Rev Alan Isaacson of St Nicholas’ Church said: “This is one of the most dramatic and moving events in the history of the church. Months of meticulous planning has gone into this fortnight and we believe it will be a truly fitting way to commemorate all who died in both world wars in our area.”
The installation was designed by Sue Hague of Pinkdotinc Design. The Sheffield-based organisation has previously worked on projects including the Olympics 2012, Epson UK and the Rugby World Cup.
The concept designs for the illumination onto St Nicholas’ Church can be seen on the Poppy Memorial Trail 2018 promotional video:
All events are free and open to the public.
Event sponsors include Peak District National Park, Pinkdotinc Design, The Royal Hotel Dungworth, Bradfield Brewery Sheffield, ADS Precision ltd, Concept Interiors, Eadon Lockwood & Riddle, Gripple, The Old Horns, Footprint Tools, Milifix, Lucid Technologies, Element 3, The Print and Copy Shop, Swann Morton, Russell Hague Photography and WW2 Dungworth, Bradfield and District Heritage Group.
WW2 Dungworth, Bradfield and District Heritage Group was formed to commemorate the actions of local people that fought in World War Two and study the significance of the nearby dams and reservoirs
It follows on from the successful study into World War One in the area that was recently completed.
All profits raised at the commemoration events will go to, Help for Heroes, The Royal British Legion, and St Nicholas’ Church Bradfield.
If you wish to support this event then please make a donation on the following link: https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/poppy-memorial-trail-2018
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