Cathedral is given £8,100 award to stage WW1 centenary events

St Columb's Cathedral
St Columb's Cathedral

The Friends of St Columb’s Cathedral have received £8,100 in funding to stage an exhibition and lecture series to mark the Centenary of the First World War.

Heritage Lottery Fund award was granted for the month-long exhibition ‘The First World War in Derry and Donegal’ which is part of the wider ‘Remembering Derry’s role in the First World War’ programme of activities.

The exhibition in the Chapter House, opened last, Thursday, November 6, and includes illustrated display panels, historical photographs and artefacts on the naval arms race, U-boat campaign, departure of the Cheshires from Ebrington, war in the air, Gallipoli, impacts on local industry and stories of local families.

A commemorative booklet has also been produced.

Among the artefacts highlighted is the 10th Battalion Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers Kings Colour as well as other Great War Standards. Records which commemorate the 49,000 Irishmen who were killed in the war will be on display and available for consultation.

Running alongside are events including readings and storytelling, lectures, poetry and a musical evening with the Hamilton Flute Band.

Paying tribute to the funders and curators of the exhibition and programme of events, the Dean of Derry, Very Rev Dr William Morton, said: “The Cathedral is the oldest building in a city from which many young men signed up for service and tragically paid the supreme sacrifice.

St Columb’s also continues to serve as the repository of many regimental flags which represent the faithful loyalty and service of all, who, through many generations, fought, and died, for the establishment of freedom, justice and peace.”

To read more on this exhibition and the associated programme of events in the Cathedral, simply scan the QR Code to the right or log on to www.stcolumbscathedral.org

The Dean continued: “Part of the appeal of this wonderful exhibition is that, in a compact and succinct way, the sheer, gigantic loss of life, together with details of the combatants in The Great War, is conveyed, while, at the same time, there is distinct focus on the local scene, and on how those who died are remembered”.

In particular the Dean thanked Ian Bartlett who curated the exhibition, military historian Richard Doherty and Tim Webster, graphic designer.

Full details of all the events in St.Columb’s Cathedral are available here, or from the Cathedral by telephoning 02871 267313.

Paul Mullan, Head of HLF NI, added his support “We were delighted to support this absorbing project based as St Columb’s Cathedral. The building has had a pivotal role to play through the history of the city and this project will help it highlight its strong connection to the First War World.

Across the UK HLF has funded groups to uncover and record their unknown First World War stories. These projects are helping all of us to explore and share complex history which broaden and deepen our collective understanding of the First World War period. Groups are now bringing their findings together on the newly created First World War hub on the Historypin website. We would encourage people to use and add to this exciting resource”.