Cirencester commemorates 100 years since the start of the First World War

At the launch of the The Feathered Aviator exhibition

At the launch of the The Feathered Aviator exhibition

First published in News
Last updated
Wilts and Gloucestershire Standard: Brendan McFadden
Wilts and Glos Standard by , Reporter

To mark the anniversary of 100 years since the start of the First World War this year a whole host of events are taking place around Cirencester.

On August 4, as part of a national event to mark the day Britain declared war on Germany,  Cirencester Parish church is inviting the community to take part in a candlelit vigil at the West Market Place War Memorial.

As part of LIGHTS OUT, people across the country will be turning off their lights from 10pm to 11pm, leaving on a single light or candle for a shared moment of reflection.

At the West Market Place ceremony all the candles will be lit to begin with and slowly people will be asked to extinguish their candles until at 11.00pm there is only one candle remaining

Taking place now until September 7 at the New Brewery Arts is the Feathered Aviator Exhibition. The centre has been working with acclaimed wire sculptor, Celia Smith, to produce The Feathered Aviator,which aims to communicate the heritage of 1914 to visitors one hundred years on.

Celia’s delicate wire sculpture encapsulates the pigeon, a bird that was heavily relied upon to deliver messages during the war, in an age where man-made communications systems were crude and unreliable.

The exhibition includes flocks of wire birds, created in Cirencester’s primary schools and by families at the Duke of Gloucester Army Barracks, who have enthusiastically embraced the craft of wire sculpture. Each bird carries a special message from its creator.

THE Corinium Museum will be holding an exhibition on the war between August 16 and August 1.

The exhibition is hosted by the Cirencester Historical and Archaeological Society and will illustrate the impact of the war on Cirencester and its residents.

It has been put together using war memorials, objects and ephemera from the County Archives, Wilts and Glos Standard, Corinium Museum and the Soldiers of Gloucestershire Museum archives .

THE Cirencester School of acting will be performing a play at the Barn Theatre which through words and music shows the war as lived by local people.

Entitled Same Time Next War, the play takes place between July 31 and August 2 and is written by Christopher Denys 0BE , who is from the area.

Tickets cost £10 adults and £8 for concessions.

There is a commemorative display exhibited at the Royal Agricultural University (RAU) until Friday November 14.

The display is in the RAU’s chapel on its Stroud Road campus and has been installed to commemorate the many staff, students and governors from the university that were killed during the war.

It can be viewed daily between 9am to 6pm.

All visitors must sign in to reception upon arrival to the campus.

A commemorative concert performed by the MJ-UK Music and Arts will take place on August 8 at 7.30pm at St. John the Baptist Church.

The concert will feature songs and music relating to the First World War period and includes readings of winning entries from poetry competitions organised by the church.

A silent film show will take place on November 7 at St. John the Baptist Church at 7.30pm.

The show, a silent film screen screening of a First World War themed film with improvised organ score by Anthony Hammond.

There will be a special screen filming of the stage musical Oh What a Lovely War at the Corinium Museum on August 30.

An afternoon talk on how the war was a key experience for Gloucestershire music composers will take place at the Corinium Museum on September 11 between 2pm and 4pm.

Tickets cost £5.65 or £5 for a season ticket holder and can be bought by visiting coriniummuseum.org.

In the Autumn there will be an exhibition of paper poppies, made by schoolchildren from the area at the St. John the Baptist Church.

There will be a Poppy Concert at Bingham Hall on October 25.

Performing will be the Cirencester Male Voice Choir and school group and Gloucestershire Police Band.

Tickets cost £10 and are available from the Wheatsheaf on Cricklade Street, Pakeman Catto & Carter on the Market Place , the BEES Knees on Watermoor Road, or on the door.

ARCHAEOLOGIST Bob Clarke will be giving a talk on an action that caused outrage away from the trenches during the war at the Corinium Museum on September 25 between 7pm and 8.30pm.

Bob will describe how on December 16, 1914, the German High Seas Fleet shelled three east coast towns killing nearly 200 people and injuring 600.

The cost is £5.65 or £5 for a season ticket holder and can be bought by visiting coriniummuseum.org.

The Cirencester Philharmonia will host an evening of music and readings from the era of the war at St. John the Baptist Church on November 15 at 7.30pm

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