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Arras commemoration event to be held in Elgin

Press Release   •   Apr 13, 2017 17:32 BST

Lord Lieutenant of Moray, Lt Col Grenville Johnston, outside the former Drill Hall in Cooper Park from where soldiers marched off to WW1 - many never to return.

A tribute to the men of Moray who died at the Battle of Arras in WW1 is being held in Elgin’s Cooper Park next Friday 21st.

The event will feature a flypast from RAF Lossiemouth, a marching contingent from Moray’s two military bases at Kinloss and Lossiemouth, a performance by the Military Wives Choir and a service of remembrance.

During the service, school pupils from Moray’s secondary schools will plant 250 crosses on the mound in Cooper Park to mark each man lost in the conflict.

Chair of the group organising the event is Moray’s Lord Lieutenant, Lt Col Grenville Johnston. He said Moray families suffered for a long time after the war from the loss of their young men.

"The Battle of Arras resulted in more soldiers from Moray perishing or being severely wounded than any other conflict in World War 1,” he said.

“You only need to visit the cemetery in Arras to realise that whole streets in parts of Moray lost a man each. The 6th Seaforths were particularly hard hit.

“It is therefore appropriate for Moray to remember these brave soldiers. There will be many in Moray today who lost grandfathers and, as a consequence, their families had a hard life after that war.

“I hope many will come to share in this tribute.”

The event is being held at 11am on Friday 21st April close to Elgin library – part of which was once the old Drill Hall from where, in 1914, the soldiers marched off to Elginrailway station to head for France.

A programme for the event will be available to download from the Moray Council website and social media page. Hard copies will be available on the day from Elgin library.

A free talk on the battle by local war historian Derek Bird will be held later that day in the Gallery at Elgin library.

More full-sized images for free download under 'related material' below.

Moray Council area stretches from Tomintoul in the south to the shores of the Moray Firth, from Keith in the east to Forres in the west. The council and its 4,500 employees respond to the needs of 95,510 residents in this beautiful part of Scotland, which nestles between Aberdeenshire and the Highlands.

Famous for its colony of dolphins, fabulous beaches and more malt whisky distilleries than any where else in Scotland, Moray is a thriving area and a great place to live.

Headquartered in  Elgin, the administrative capital of Moray.

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