Churches are urged to ring bells to mark the end of the First World War
January 9, 2018
The Society of Editors is adding its voice to an appeal to local churches and media organisations to support a major event to mark the anniversary of the end of the Great War.
Dumbarton man John Hamilton Brown who won the Victoria Cross for bravery in the conflict was honoured recently when a paving stone bearing his name and marking his achievement was placed at the war memorial in Levengrove Park.
Depute Provost Karen Conaghan and Lord Lieutenant Mike Gregory joined relatives of the brave soldier at the cenotaph.
The Society is a major supporter of Battle’s Over – a series of commemorations to take place in November of this year to mark when the guns fell silent in 1918.
Already the event organisers have arranged for a small army of pipers and buglers to mark the moment on November 11. Now the Society is appealing to local publishers and media organisations to encourage churches in their area to agree to sound their bells on that date.
The organisers of Battle’s Over, hope to see more than 1,000 churches and cathedrals participate by ringing their bells simultaneously at 7.05pm on the night of November 11th 2018.
Pageantmaster Bruno Peek LVO OBE OPR, is encouraging bell ringers to take part in Ringing Out for Peace. We want this to be the most widespread ringing of church bells since the first world war.
“It would be a fitting and moving tribute to the 1400 or so bell ringers that we understand lost their lives during World War One,” said Mr Peek. “I have no doubt that dedicated campanologists in Britain and around the world will want to join in this once-in-a-lifetime tribute to everyone who served on the battlefields, the high seas and the home front.”
Ringing Out for Peace is part of Battle’s Over, day-long, unique commemoration of the end of the first world war taking place throughout the United Kingdom, Channel Islands, the Isle of Man, and at scores of locations overseas, including Australia, Canada, Denmark, Somaliland, the United States and Germany to name but a few.
It begins at 6am on November 11th 2018 with lone pipers playing Battle’s O’er, a traditional tune played after a battle, outside every cathedral in the country. At the same time, pipers everywhere will be playing the same tune in their local communities around the world. The tribute is being organised with the assistance of Glasgow-based College of Piping, local pipe bands around the world, Air Training Corps and the Army Cadet Force.
At 6.55pm buglers will sound the Last Post at more than 1,000 locations, where at 7pm WW1 Beacons of Light will be lit, signifying the light of peace that emerged from the dreadful darkness of war.
Then at 7.05pm church and cathedral bells will ring out in, Ringing Out for Peace, being organised with the assistance of the Central Council of Church Bell Ringers, the representative body for groups who ring bells in the English tradition with rope and wheel. It was founded in 1891 and represents 65 affiliated societies of local ringers from all over the British Isles and in Australia, Canada, the USA, South Africa and Italy.
Mr Peek said, “The stirring sound of church and cathedral bells will provide a fitting conclusion to a day of contemplation, commemoration and, ultimately, celebration as the United Kingdom and other nations reflect on events a century ago, on the battlefields of Europe and at home in our factories and farms.
“I hope as many people as possible will join us in the Battle’s Over events to mark the conclusion of the first world war and pay tribute to the loved ones who played their part.”
The event is supported by the Society of Editors in the UK. The Society’s executive director Ian Murray commented: “As a Society we strive to protect freedom of speech and expression which is integral to our way of life. However, no matter how important our part in this struggle, the role played by those brave men and women who fought to preserve our freedoms on the battlefields and the home front in the Great War and those that have followed towers over us. I am delighted that the Society is able to support Battle’s Over this year and will be urging our members and the media as a whole to follow suit.”
Churches can register their involvement by completing the Ringing out for Peace entry form found at – www.brunopeek.co.uk
The event has four charities linked to it – The Royal Naval Association, Army Benevolent Fund – the Soldiers Charity, RAF Benevolent Fund and the Merchant Navy Association.
More information on Battle’s Over – A Nation’s Tribute 11th November 2018, and how to take part, can be found at www.brunopeek.co.uk