Thank you for taking part in our commemoration projects this year. You joined over 240 community groups across the country, from Grimsby to Gravesend, in sharing and remembering forgotten stories from the First World War. Here are some brilliant tributes from 2017 – we hope this experience has been as rewarding for you as it has been for us.
We started this year commemorating 100 years of the sinking of SS Mendi. Here is a video of legendary musician, Hugh Masekele, playing Hambe Kahle, also known as the African Last Post, to remember over 600 men from the South African Native Labour Corps who died on 21 February 1917 when the SS Mendi sank.
Friends of Brandwood End Cemetery looked into Private William Shakespeare who is buried in Birmingham (Brandwood End) Cemetery. The group discovered that Private Shakespeare fought in many battles in 1917 and was hit by a shell burst at the Battle of Passchendaele as his Battalion retreated. Private Shakespeare was brought back to the UK on a stretcher but never recovered from his wounds. He died aged 35 on 6 November 1917.
Age UK Leicestershire & Rutland remembered the Indian Labour Corps by making paper marigolds (the Indian flower of Remembrance) and playing the Last Post on an Indian instrument.
Youngsters from Middlesbrough FC Academy researched Private HJ Duckworth, a local Passchendaele at Home serviceman. A service for Private Duckworth was attended by his great nephew, Eric Taylor, who read about the project in a match programme.
Share your story
Don’t forget to share photographs from your events and activities with us. For any activity on social media, please use the hashtags #Unremembered or #Passchendaele100 and tag @Big_Ideas_Co as well as our funder @CommunitiesUK.
Get involved in 2018
We have lots of new First World War projects for you to get involved with in 2018, with free resources and small-scale funding available, including a continuation of The Unremembered: World War One’s Army of Workers, Ringing Remembers in memory of the 1400 bellringers that died in the First World War, and Remember RAF100 – which commemorates the Royal Air Force 100 years after formation.
Watch this space for news of more exciting opportunities, funded by the Department for Communities and Local Government.