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First World War Scheme Topped Off with Royal Visit

Published Wednesday, 29 October 2014

An ambitious scheme to plant oak trees in Ribble Valley's 35 parishes in memory of the borough's First World War fallen will be topped off by a Royal visit.

Ribble Valley Borough Council has planted trees in 36 villages, the remaining four will be planted during Remembrance weekend and the final tree by His Royal Highness The Duke of Kent at Clitheroe Castle on 26 November.

Parishes with more than one village have received more than one tree.

The trees bear plaques in memory of the hundreds of young Ribble Valley men who lost their lives during the Great War.

From 4 August 2014, the 100th anniversary of the start of the First World War, until 11 November 2018, the anniversary of the official ceasefire, or Armistice Day, communities across the world are coming together to remember those who lived, fought and died in the First World War.

Ribble Valley Mayor Michael Ranson said: "We are all connected to the First World War through our family history, the fallen in our local communities, or its long-term impact on society.

“I am delighted that so many parishes have supported the tree-planting campaign and helped to create a ‘living’ memorial to the borough’s brave young men and their loved ones.

“I am particularly delighted that this successfully community campaign will be completed by His Royal Highness The Duke of Kent, a former professional soldier and honorary Field  Marshal, who remains the Royal Colonel of a number of well-known regiments.”

The First World War claimed the lives of 16million people across the world and had a huge impact on those who experienced it.

As Ribble Valley came into being in 1974, precise records of the number of fallen in the borough do not exist, but it is believed to be around 1,000.

The final tree-plantings: 8 November – Simonstone (10.30am), 10 November – Barrow (10.00am), Wiswell (10.30am), Read (11.00am), 26 November – Clitheroe Castle (3.00pm).

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