Calderdale marks the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of World War One

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Today marks the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of the First World War and a range of events are being held across Calderdale to commemorate the special centenary.

Calderdale Council is taking part in the Royal Britisyh Legion’s Lights Out campaign and will turn off the lights in Halifax Town Hall this evening from 10pm to 11pm.

A candle will also be lit to illuminate the Book of Remembrance, which is kept in the building.

The book is a record of the people from the local area who lost their lives during the First World War, and commemorates the sacrifices they made.

Lighting the candle is also an opportunity to remember everyone who served in the war.

The event is being hosted by the Mayor of Calderdale, Cllr Patricia Allen, and attendees will include representatives from Calderdale Council, the Parish Councils, the Royal British Legion, the Deputy Lieutenant’s office, Halifax Great War Society, Halifax Antiquarians Society and the Scouts.

During the hour there will be a series of readings and recollections from the First World War, focusing on local personalities and events.

An exhibition will also run for two weeks and will showcase images and articles from the months leading up to the outbreak of the First World War, illustrating what was happening in Calderdale at the time.

Calderdale Council’s Cabinet Member for Communities, Cllr Marcus Thompson, said: “We are proud to be involved in the Lights Out campaign.

“The event at the Town Hall is a symbol of our community’s respect for those who gave so much during the First World War, and is just one of the ways we are marking the centenary of its outbreak.

“It allows us to reflect on the sacrifices that people made, and we encourage local people to get involved by turning off their lights between 10pm and 11pm on Monday.”

People across Halifax are also being given the chance to learn about what impact the First World War had on Calderdale - both home and abroad.

A brand new exhibition “For King and Country: Calderdale’s First World War Centenary 1914-18” opened at the Bankfield Museum on Saturday and gives a taste of what the war was like for soldiers fighting abroad, but also looks at how they were supported by loved ones back home.

The exhibition is free to attend and will be open Tuesday to Saturday from 10am to 4pm, until December 2018.

Yesterday, members of the Churches Together in Claremount and Boothtown group met at St Bernard`s RC Church for a Commemoration Service.

In the presence of the Mayor, Cllr Patricia Allen, the Commemoration service focussed on the ways in which the lives of local people were changed by the War

The Littleborough Band provided the music during the service and continued to play in the Hall while refreshments were served, whilst there were also choir contributions from the choirs of St Bernard`s, St Anne`s and St Thomas’.

The Commemoration Service also included exhibitions of work by local institutions and schools, WW1 poetry and art.

Other events to commemorate the occasion include a Great War exhibition at Vale Baptist Church, Cornholme.

Today is the final day of the exhibition, which will close at 12pm.

From 11-11.30am a commemoration will be held at Centre Vale Park, Todmorden.

Members of the Todmorden branch of the Royal British Legion will plant named crosses for each of the 659 Todmorden servicemen who died in the Great War.

Beginning at 11.30am, there will be a Service of Commemoration at the War Memorial on Burnley Road, Mytholmroyd.

This evening, a vigil service will be held at St Michael’s Church, Mytholmroyd from 7.30pm.

The service is being held in conjunction with Hebden Bridge Royal British Legion and will be followed by coffee and biscuits in the church hall.

A commemoration service will also be held atn St Mary’s Church, Todmorden, from 7.30pm

Lights Out is an appeal to everyone in the UK to turn off their lights between 10pm and 11pm on 4 August 2014 – leaving only a single light or candle.