First World War battle to be marked by ceremony at Ipswich park cenotaph

The Royal British Legion has organised the event at the Cenotaph in Christchurch Park. Picture: SARA

The Royal British Legion has organised the event at the Cenotaph in Christchurch Park. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN - Credit: Archant

The centenary of the Battle of Passchendaele is to be marked next week with a special ceremony in the heart of Ipswich.

Whistles will mark Passchendaele centenary

The battle, which raged on the Western Front, began on July 31 1917 and exactly 100 years later members of the public are invited to join the Mayor of Ipswich, Sarah Barber, in Christchurch Park at 7.15am.

The commemoration has been organised by the Royal British Legion, and veterans and cadets will stand in silence as whistles are blown at 7.30am to mark the “going over the top”.

The Battle of Passchendaele (officially known as the Third Battle of Ypres) began in July 1917 and lasted until November, with dreadful weather bringing a sea of mud to the Flanders trenches.

The casualties at Passchendaele were horrendous – 275,000 dead or wounded on the British and Allied side and 220,000 German victims. Little land was gained in the offensive.