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Lights go out across the region to mark centenary of First World War

Candles around the Buckingham war memorial for Lights Out to mark 100th anniversary of start of First World War PNL-140508-123559001

Candles around the Buckingham war memorial for Lights Out to mark 100th anniversary of start of First World War PNL-140508-123559001

Candlelit vigils marked the 100th anniversary of the start of five years of war as the Advertiser and Review region joined the country in turning its lights out.

People across the UK were invited to turn their lights out for an hour until 11pm yesterday, Monday, to mark the centenary of the start of the First World War.

Towns and villages across the region held their own ceremonies at war memorials to remember those died during the war and households turned out their lights to leave a single candle burning.

The event was inspired by the words of wartime foreign secretary Sir Edward Grey, who said on the eve of the First World War: “The lamps are going out all over Europe; we shall not see them lit again in our lifetime.”

In Buckingham, people gathered around the war memorial at SS Peter and Paul Church while in Brackley, 200 people attended a short service at St John Chapel, followed by a gathering of 500 residents at the war memorial on the piazza for a short programme of remembrance and singing. A single candlelit vigil was held at the end of the evening.

Chairman of events at Buckingham Town Council, Andrew Mahi said it was an emotional event.

He said: “Someone had left a replica medal on the memorial so they must have felt strongly. I was touched when I saw it and I got quite emotional at times. It was a good time to reflect and to remember those who sacrificed their lives.”

Councillor Mahi also encouraged pubs in the town to get involved by switching off their lights.

“I’m glad we did something as we won’t get this opportunity again to show our appreciation for those who did so much for us,” he said.

 

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