Ipswich: The grim record that marks the impact of the First World War on our community - we publish the Ipswich Roll of Honour
PUBLISHED: 10:33 01 August 2014 | UPDATED: 10:34 01 August 2014
As the world prepares to mark the centenary of the outbreak of the First World War, today we publish the Ipswich roll of honour - recording the names of all those from the town known to have perished in the conflict.
In total, there are 1,526 names in the Roll of Honour– a truly astonishing number. But experts believe the true death toll was much higher and some names have been lost forever.
The names of the town’s fallen are published inside in a special supplement, available with our e-edition, as Ipswich prepares for a weekend of reflection leading up to the actual centenary of war being declared on Monday.
Today an exhibition was due to be opened in the Town Hall by mayor Bill Quinton and on Sunday events spanning 100 years dominate the civic calendar.
There are very few people left with a direct memory of the First World War. But there are many still around who will have heard first-hand accounts of the conflict from parents, grandparents, or great-grandparents.
Documentaries and dramas about the First World War like Warhorse, Private Peaceful and The Crimson Field have brought the horrors of the conflict to a new generation.
And this was a conflict that touched communities across the country – in a large town like Ipswich everyone will have known someone affected by the war.
About one in nine of those who went to war never returned – and a further 26% suffered injuries.
Many of those who did return were affected by their wartime experiences for the rest of their lives, either physically or mentally.
Many of the names on the Ipswich roll of honour are very familiar in the town today – and they will be remembered as the commemorations get under way.
In Ipswich there will be a march past and parade on Sunday morning by volunteer members of the Territorial Army based in the town. They will be marching through the town from 10.30am.
In the afternoon there is a special service at St Matthew’s Church at 5pm.
On Monday evening there is a special “Lights Out” ceremony at the Cenotaph in Christchurch Park starting with a parade through the town at 7.30pm which will mark the declaration of war.
Bury St Edmunds’ Cathedral is holding a special County Service of choral evensong at 3.30pm on Sunday afternoon which will be attended by the Lord Lieutenant of Suffolk, Lord Tollemache, and the acting Bishop of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich Rt Rev David Thomson.
The chairman of the Ipswich branch of the Royal British Legion, Robin Vickery, has helped to organise the events in the town and said people must remember the sacrifices made in the war.
He said: “These events are very important. The Royal British Legion is the custodian of our remembrance in this country.
“When you talk to people they pass down family memories from the First World War and it is vital that we do all we can to keep those alive for current and future generations across the country.”
Mr Quinton will be leading the town’s events over the weekend. He said: “We reflect and we commemorate; we do not celebrate. And we remember the sacrifice of so many from so many nations.”