Organisers of the Donaghcloney Remembers the Somme parade and commemoration Service have been described as a credit to the community by local Ulster Unionist politicians Jo-Anne Dobson MLA and Councillor Carol Black.
Mrs Dobson said, “It was an extremely moving experience as, one hundred years on, Donaghcloney village came to a standstill to remember those who fought and died in World War I!
“The names of the forty three men from the village who paid the supreme sacrifice in that war are etched on the War Memorial and upon our hearts forever,” she told the MAIL.
“It was especially poignant that the children of Donaghcloney Primary School played a central part in the Remembrance of those whose names were read out by Tom Walker, Branch Chairman of the Royal British Legion.
“I commend Kyle Savage and the steering committee members whose months of painstaking preparation was evident for all to see and especially John Harrison whose meticulously researched, 80 page, centenary booklet is available through my constituency office for a minimum donation of £3.
“Well done also to Ashley Forbes and his Great War Exhibition which was held during the week in the Orange Hall! His hours of preparation and research were also evident to any of us who took time to visit and view the exhibition.”
Also commenting Councillor Carol Black said, “A century has now passed since the Battle of the Somme in 1916, but it was terrific to see the centre of the village packed with people to join in the community ceremony.
“Well done to everyone involved, to the clergy, the schoolchildren and their teachers and especially all the organisers of ‘Donaghcloney Remembers The Somme’ - you are all a credit to the community.”
Donaghcloney ‘Remembers The Somme’, was a week of events organised by a local steering committee representing various local groups and organisations, and it reflected upon the sacrifice made by so many a Centenary ago.
Around 200 men from Donaghcloney village and the local area are believed to have served with various divisions throughout the four years, with at least 43 never to return.
Indeed many families, some with up to eight members of a family at the Front throughout the four years, suffered greatly.
On Friday 1st July, the annual Somme Parade hosted by the Royal British Legion will leave the Legion at 7.15pm.