Help us remember the fallen

By Tim Clarke 09/05 Updated: 11/05 08:48

Buy photos » Annette Summers, from the Royal British Legion, Mayor Dr David Tibbutt and archives manager Coun Adrian Gregson welcome the first suggestions from the public. Picture by Marcus Mingins 1912015MMR.

WAR-THEMED theatre shows and tea parties, guided tours and historic exhibitions are just some of the ideas set to shape the city's own commemorations to mark the centenary of the outbreak of the First World War.

A special coffee morning was held at the Guildhall this week where people were given the chance to share their views on how Worcester should mark one of the bloodiest conflicts in history.

About 30 people turned up to chat to members of a committee which has been set up by the Mayor's Office to help plan a series of commemorative events and activities which will take place across the county between 2014 and 2018.

Some of the ideas already taking shape include a series of theatre productions, displays of memorabilia and a tour exploring the life of former city vicar Rev Geoffrey Studdert Kennedy, affectionately known as Woodbine Willie, who became a hero for his support of troops in the trenches.

Major re-enactments and an annual First World War-themed tea party at the Diglis Hotel are also set to form part of the commemorations, which will be launched with a special service at Worcester Cathedral.

But the committee are keen to hear people's own suggestions on what should happen and a drop box has been placed in the Guildhall where people can post their ideas.

War memorial historian Sandra Taylor, who is a member of the committee, said: "The First World War changed the course of history in so many ways and Worcester was not left untouched by what happened.

"We would not have the freedom we have now if it wasn't for these events and it's important we commemorate them."

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