11:00 11.11.11

Darrell and Mike [BCAL] attended the annual Armistice Day ceremony at the Bury Fusiliers Museum this morning which coincided with the opening of Gallipoli Gardens.

A bit of background to the naming of the Garden – On the 25th April 1915 a joint British and French force landed on the Gallipoli Peninsula in Turkey.  The aim of the operation was to capture the capital of the Ottoman Empire Constantinople, open up a supply route to Russia and encourage the Balkan States to join the allies.  The campaign lasted from April 1915 to January 1916.  It was a failure for the Allies with heavy casualties on both sides.

To this day Gallipoli is not forgotten in Bury and annually on the Sunday nearest to the 25th April a church service and parade to commemorate Gallipoli take place in Bury.  The day not only includes members of the Fusilier Family but also members of the local community, thus binding together Regiment and Community.

The Fusilier Museum in Bury tells the exciting story of one of Lancashire’s most famous Regiments. The Regiment of 6VCs before breakfast at Gallipoli, indeed the regiment that earned more VCs in the First World War than any other infantry regiment in the British Army. The archive and displays illustrate the stories of famous members of the Regiment from Wolfe storming Quebec and Ross burning the White House, to the Regiment’s connection with Napoleon and Tolkein and the creation of Lord of the Rings. The regimental library and archive are on site and may be viewed by appointment. The museum has moved from Wellington Barracks to the centre of Bury, and opened on 27th June 2009. The museum has a new collection, that of the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers. Although the Regiment was formed in 1968, this is the first time the Regiment has had its own museum and place to commemorate its history – from the streets of Northern Ireland to Afghanistan, the Regiment’s most recent operational deployment.

Two Minutes’ Silence

(Armistice Day, 1925)

Not mine this year

To keep the silence that I hold so dear,

Since I shall be with you,

My little son too small to understand

Or keep you still,

Being only two.

So, I take your hand,

And bring you to the grassy, wind-swept hill,

Where I stand and am quiet,

Your baby words

Will chatter still of the cows and trees and birds.

They will not mind.

They loved the country, and children, and sun, and wind.

My little lad,

They gave their life to keep you safe and glad,

That you might grow – a heritage, a trust,

A man to play the game when they are dust.

Teresa Hooley.

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