Mayor Carson leads cross party delegation at Battle of the Somme commemorations

July 1, 2022

Mayor Councillor Scott Carson, Elected Members and officers of Lisburn & Castlereagh City Council have attended Battle of the Somme memorials and remembrance services in France & Belgium to pay respects on behalf of Lisburn Castlereagh.

Mayor Carson was joined by Alderman Amanda Grehan, Cllr Andrew Ewing, Cllr Andrew Gowan, Cllr Jenny Palmer and Cllr Alex Swan along with LCCC Chief Executive David Burns and Director of Leisure and Wellbeing Louise Moore.

On day one, the delegation visited a memorial for Canadian soldiers who fought the Battle of Vimy Ridge in April 1917.

This was followed by a visit to the Island of Ireland Peace Park at Messines to remember those from the Island of Ireland who died, were wounded or were reported missing during the First World War.

Next was a visit to the largest cemetery for Commonwealth soldiers in the world at Tyne Cot Cemetery where there are around 12,000 graves, many belonging to unknown soldiers.

The day finished with the laying of a wreath on behalf of the council at Menin Gate Memorial to the Missing to remember British and Commonwealth soldiers whose graves are also unknown.

On the 1st of July, the anniversary of the beginning of the Battle of the Somme, the cross party delegation attended two Somme Association Remembrance Services and a Commonwealth Service of Remembrance.

Day two began by laying a wreath at Thiepval Memorial, which is dedicated to the Missing. Over 72,000 soldiers from the United Kingdom and South African forces are laid to rest here. The memorial also serves as an Anglo-French Battle Memorial.

The group also visited Martinsart and Authuile Cemeteries where over 750 soldiers lay including 10 from Royal Hillsborough before a visit to the Ulster Memorial Tower in Thiepval. The Tower honours the 36th Division and all of those from Ulster who served during the First World War.

The visit will conclude on day three by paying respects at Lochnagar Crater which has been preserved as a memorial site for all of those who have suffered during War and a service is held every 1st of July for the Battle of the Somme.

This will be followed by visiting Beaumont-Hamel Newfoundland Memorial. The site is the largest area from the Battle of the Somme that has been preserved and remembers the Newfoundland Regiment that were all killed during World War One.

Day One

Caption: (L-R) Cllr Andrew Ewing, LCCC Director of Leisure & Wellbeing Louise Moore, Mayor Cllr Scott Carson, Cllr Jenny Palmer, Alderman Amanda Grehan, LCCC Chief Executive David Burns, Cllr Andrew Gowan and Cllr Alex Swan at Vimy Ridge Memorial.

Caption: (L-R) Cllr Alex Swan, Mayor Cllr Scott Carson, Cllr Andrew Ewing, Cllr Jenny Palmer, Alderman Amanda Grehan and Cllr Andrew Gowan at Ireland Peace Park.

Caption: The wreath laid at Menin Gate Memorial to the Missing

Day Two

Caption: (L-R) LCCC Chief Executive David Burns and Mayor Councillor Scott Carson lay a wreath at Thiepval Memorial.

Caption: (L-R) LCCC Director of Leisure & Wellbeing Louise Moore, LCCC Chief Executive David Burns, Cllr Andrew Ewing, Cllr Andrew Gowan, Cllr Jenny Palmer, Cllr Alex Swan, Alderman Amanda Grehan and Mayor Cllr Scott Carson pay respects at the memorials of 10 soliders from Royal Hillsborough.

Caption: (L-R) Cllr Alex Swan, Cllr Andrew Ewing, Cllr Jenny Palmer, Mayor Cllr Scott Carson, Ald Amanda Grehan and Cllr Andrew Gowan at Ulster Memorial Tower.

Caption: (L-R) Mayor Cllr Scott Carosn, Cllr Alex Swan, Cllr Andrew Ewing lay a wreath at at the Guillemont memorial site to honour those from across the Island of Ireland who fought in the Battle of the Somme.