Village to hold service in memory of Battle of the Somme

Bailiff Bridge Memorial Park.
Bailiff Bridge Memorial Park.

A service to mark 100 years since the beginning of the Battle of the Somme began will be held in Bailiff Bridge.

The Royal British Legion service, which will be held in Bailiff Bridge Memorial Park, will be lead by the Rev Kathryn Buck from St Matthew’s Church in Lightcliffe.

Dignitaries including the Mayor of Calderdale Howard Blagbrough and Calder Valley MP Craig Whittaker will attend the event and pupils from Cliffe Hill Community Primary School, in Lightcliffe, and Lightcliffe Academy will take part.

The service will include hymns and prayers, members of St Matthew’s choir taking part.

Malcolm Silkstone, from the Bailiff Bridge Memorial Park and Residents Association, said: “It was a horrific battle.

“It’s very important that we pay tribute.

“When you’re trying to understand what’s happening in the present it’s very important to know what happened in the past.”

The Battle of the Somme took place 1 July-November 18, 1916, on both sides of the upper reaches of the River Somme in France.

More than a million men were wounded or killed, making it one of the bloodiest battles history.

The first day was one of the blackest in British military history, with 60,000 casualties. Some 20,000 men died.

The Bailiff Bridge service will take place Friday July 1 at 11am.

Organisers have suggested anyone who wishes to attend to arrive by 10.45am.