Churches throughout the Diocese of Blackburn (The Church of England in Lancashire) are marking the 100th anniversary of the end of the First World War with a series of events, commemorations and services.
We are gathering together a selection of those events on this page. See our Diocesan events calendar for more. If your church or school is doing something for Remembrance and you want to be featured, please follow the format of the stories below and send your submission to firstname.lastname@example.org for adding to this page and to the events calendar.
The children at St Peter’s C of E School, Mawdesley are finding out about the young men from the village who gave their lives in the conflict, as part of the Archbishop of York’s Young leaders award. Teacher Heidi Jackson has researched the subject with the youngsters, and Curate of St Peter’s church the Rev Janet Taylor, is responsible for the Young Leader’s Award challenges at the school.
Several churches across the Diocese are participating in the national ‘There But Not There’ initiative – installing specially designed silhouettes in their buildings to represent soldiers who lost their lives in World War One. Buildings where you can see silhouettes include Blackburn Cathedral (every day up to Remembrance Sunday) and, from November 6 to November 11, at St Cuthbert’s Church in Lytham, which will be open from 10am to 4pm each of those days. St Cuthbert’s will be open from 10am to 4pm each of those days. One of the figures is pictured left in situ in St Cuthbert's and the church is also taking the figures ‘on tour’ throughout the week, and they will be making appearances at local schools assemblies and 40 cafes, restaurants and pubs across Lytham. Also hosting ‘There But Not There’ figures over the Remembrance week are St Leonard’s Church in Downham; the Accrington Pals Chapel at St John the Evangelist Church in Accrington and Ribchester St Wilfrid, Hurst Green and Mitton.
St James’ Church, Whitechapel, is presenting ‘Armistice - an afternoon of WW1 Memories’ in the Village Hall, PR3 2EB on Saturday November 10 at 3pm. Tickets £5 (children free). Proceeds to Military charities and St James’ War Memorial Fund. Information 01772 864289 or 01995 640504/640752.
Blackburn Cathedral has a full day on November 11 supporting the ‘Battle’s Over’ national commemoration of the end of the war. At 6am the traditional air ‘Battle’s O’er’ will be played outside the Cathedral, followed by the Civic Service of Remembrance at 9.30am which will be sung by the Cathedral’s Young People’s Choir. From 12.30 pm to 1.30pm a peal of bells will be rung to commemorate the armistice, and in the evening at 6.40pm the Cathedral will be playing its part in the Nation’s Tribute with the lighting of a beacon in the Cathedral forecourt. The final act of the day will be the Battle’s Over ringing out for peace at 7.05pm, as the Cathedral joins the nations’s other Cathedrals, Minsters and Churches to mark the end of the conflict.
All Saints Church in Appley Bridge will be taking part in the Community Afternoon Tea Party commemoration on Sunday November 4. Churches Together in Appley Bridge will lead prayers and commemoration at the Community Centre, where 15 representations of the 15 young men who gave their lives from the village will be on display. All Saints will take part in the village Memorial Service at the war memorial on Sunday November 11.
St Chad’s at Poulton-le-Fylde has marked the centenary with an external display of 2,000 poppies, pictured left, many of them sent from far and wide including Scotland and Wales. A service of Dedication took place on Thursday November 1st. Holy Trinity Hoghton has also made an external poppy display that meanders through the churchyard from the gate to the church (pictured left, below).
At Lancaster Priory, November 11 will be marked by a Civic Service of Remembrance, with guest preacher the Rev. Andreas Jensen of Blackburn’s twin diocese of Braunschweig in Germany. In the evening, Lancaster’s first beacon in the city’s chain of commemorative beacons will be lit by the Lord Shuttleworth, Lord Lieutenant of Lancashire, supported by the Bishop of Lancaster, the Rt Rev Dr Jill Duff. This will be followed by a performance of the ‘Mass For Peace’ in the Priory Church.
Lancaster Priory is also hosting a performance installation by the award-winning artist and researcher Louise Ann Wilson to mark the centenary. ’Returning, We Hear The Larks’ uses artefacts and objects found in and associated with Lancaster Priory, including memorial-texts, photographs, film, poetry and music combined with a beautiful, community-made paper installation of red roses. Lancaster Priory choir will be taking part. 'Returning, We Hear The Larks’ began on Friday 2nd November and will continue throughout the week leading up to the Remembrance weekend.
St Peter’s Church Scorton marks the end of the conflict with a concert entitled ‘Keep The Home Fires Burning’ on Saturday November 10th at 7pm. The Lancashire Youth Brass Band will be performing songs by Roseanna Sharples, with Tickets including refreshments at £7 and £3 concessions. This will be followed by ‘We will remember them’ with ‘The Trust Singers’ on Sunday November 11 at 6pm. For more information visit the website www.unitedparish.co.uk
On Thursday November 8 at 7.30pm, Blackburn Cathedral will play host to ‘Brothers in Arms’, the moving story of twin brothers Noel and Christopher Chavasse. Both were both highly decorated soldiers who served with great distinction in the Great War, Noel Chavasse notable for being one of only three soldiers to have been awarded the Victoria Cross twice. His brother Christopher was awarded the Military Cross for his courage and steadfast service. Their lives tell an inspiring story of courage, service, sacrifice and faith lived out under fire. Tickets, priced £2, are available from the Cathedral Shop with all proceeds being donated to the Royal British Legion.
The 41 fallen of Baxenden, lads who were part of the Accrington Pals regiment, will be remembered at a service of commemoration at St John’s starting at 3pm on November 11th, with silence and reflection to follow at the war memorial. This will be followed by a family street party in the styles of the 1920s.
St Michael’s Church in Ashton, Preston, has identified the properties where the area’s Great War casualties lived, and has visited every home with a window sticker declaring that the house was the home of a Great War hero, inviting all the householders to a special service of commemoration on Friday November 9th at 7-30pm. A similar approach has been taken by St Stephen’s church in Preston with a Remembrance Service scheduled for November 11th at 10.30am.
St James’ Church Lower Darwen Remembrance service will take place at the War Memorial at 11am on November 11th.
For the 100th anniversary of the end of the First World War, Blackburn Diocesan Board of Education Youth Team has produced a guide to a series of activities - ‘Remembrance Day Pick N Mix’ - that explore the Armistice and the Great War’s impact and are entirely suitable for young people in groups. The online resource pack allows leaders to create a youth session to mark the anniversary, providing inspiration and ideas which stretch beyond youth group walls. The pack is available at www.bdeducation.org.uk/youth/resources.
On Saturday 17th November at 7.30pm, St John's Church in Whittle le Woods will host ‘Brothers in Arms’, the moving story of twin brothers Noel and Christopher Chavasse. Both were both highly decorated soldiers who served with great distinction in the Great War, Noel Chavasse notable for being one of only three soldiers to have been awarded the Victoria Cross twice. His brother Christopher was awarded the Military Cross for his courage and steadfast service. Their lives tell an inspiring story of courage, service, sacrifice and faith lived out under fire. Admission is free.
Eccleston’s Civic Act of Remembrance on November 11th begins at 10-45am at Eccleston Primary School as Eccleston Brass Band lead the parade to St Mary’s Church. After the two minutes silence around the village war memorial, during which ceramic poppies and wreathes will be laid by children of the village schools, there will be a service in church led by the Rector of Eccleston, Fr Andrew Brown, with a sermon preached by the Methodist Minister, Rev Tony Simpson.
The congregation of Buckshaw Village Church, near Chorley, will meet at The Green Man pub in Buckshaw Village on Sunday 11th November at 9.45am before beginning a silent walk to church prior to the service of Remembrance. All are welcome to join them. Buckshaw Village itself was built on the site of the Royal Ordnance Factory which played a significant role in World War Two particularly. It was the site where the Dam Busters’ bouncing bombs, designed by Barnes Wallis, were filled prior to being loaded up for the famous 1943 raid on the Ruhr Valley in Germany.
At All Saints Church in Higher Walton has a display of World War 1 Memorabilia and the Roll of Honour in Church on Wednesday 7th November from 10am to noon and Saturday 10th November from 10:30am to noon. An Act of Community Remembrance takes place on Sunday 11th November at 10:30am, followed by wreath laying at the War Memorial and afterwards a free ‘peace party’ in Church – all welcome. Alongside church towers nationwide, the church bells will also be rung to mark the 100th anniversary of the peace.
Chorley St Laurence’s Church, Union Street, PR7 1EB. On Sunday November 11 at 10.30am there will be a Remembrance Sunday Civic Service at the war memorial in Astley Park.
At St Leonard’s Church, Langho, Blackburn BB6 8AB on Saturday November 10 at 7.30pm, there will be a Remembrance Concert by Blackburn Salvation Army Band. Tickets £8 (inc refreshments) available on the door or from Rev. Tracy Swindells on 01254 247039.
Blackburn Music Society presents ‘Blackburn Remembers’, an Armistice Centenary Concert on Saturday November 10 at 7pm in Blackburn Cathedral, in conjunction with Blackburn with Darwen Brass Band and Salesbury School Chamber Choir. More details and tickets: www.blackburnmusicsociety.org.uk
On Saturday, November 10 at 2pm, St Cuthbert’s Church in Lytham is holding a memorial service for peace in church and at their war memorial in the church grounds. After that there will be a free showing of the film ‘Journey’s End’ at 3.30pm, followed by a short vigil. On Sunday, November 11 there will be one morning service at 9am, led by children from local schools; local uniformed organisations and the church Sunday School. After the service the congregation will join the local Civic Remembrance Parade at 10.45am.
Ribbleton Community Choir present ‘Lest We Forget’ at St Mary Magdalene’s Church, Farringdon Lane, Ribbleston, PR2 6RD on November 10, at 7.30pm. Adults £3 and children free.
All three Parishes at Ribchester Hurst Green and Mitton are very active across the Remembrance season ... including siting 'There But Not There' silhouettes of soldiers in the churches. In Ribchester, there are several reminders all around the village including a cutout of a soldier carrying a comrade in the churchyard (pictured left); while at Mitton, Mr Paul Garlington, a History teacher at Stonyhurst is giving a talk on the Evening of the 11th at 6.30pm about what was happening locally 100 years ago.