Hartlepool is set to mark 100 years since the Battle of the Somme

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Hartlepool will pay homage to one of the First World War’s biggest and most costly battles in its 100th anniversary.

Ex-servicemen, military associations and members of the public will remember the Battle of the Somme at Hartlepool Borough Hall in September.

an occasion where all ex-service personnel in Hartlepool come together and revive the camaraderie they once had when they served in the forces

Edward Powell

The Teesside branch of the Royal Logistics Corps (RLC) has been awarded £4,500 to hold the event honouring those who lost their lives during the battle.

Edward Powell, association social secretary, said: “It will be a memorable evening. It will be an occasion where all ex-service personnel in Hartlepool come together and revive the camaraderie they once had when they served in the forces.

“We will pay homage and show our respects to those involved in the Battle of the Somme.

“It was the most horrific battle and we lost more men in one battle than has ever been lost before in British military history.”

The battle raged from July to November in 1916. There was around 60,000 casualties by the end of the first day and over a million killed and injured when it ended.

The Hartlepool event will feature a drumhead religious service which were held in the field and at home during the First World War to remember those at the front.

Sets of drums are piled on top of each other with colours draped over them to serve as a makeshift altar.

Standards of all the ex-service associations at the event will be laid on top of drums for a short service.

A two minutes silence will be held and The Last Post and Reveille played.

It will be followed by dancing to music from Teesside Silver Band, a buffet and raffle.

The event will take place on Saturday, September 10, at 7pm.

Invitations have been sent to all of the ex-service associations in the Hartlepool area. Forces veterans who are not members of any association and members of the public are also welcome.

There will be 300 seats available on a first come first served basis.

Anyone who would like to attend should contact Edward Powell, 42 Birchill Gardens, Hartlepool, TS26 0JT.