Sunday 26 May 2019

Nation in tributes to war dead in ceremonies marking centenary of Armistice

The Earl of Meath laid a wreath at the Armistice day of remembrance in Bray yesterday. Photo: Fergal Phillips
The Earl of Meath laid a wreath at the Armistice day of remembrance in Bray yesterday. Photo: Fergal Phillips

Ireland remembers her war dead today in ceremonies marking the centenary of the Armistice that ended World War 1.

President Michael D Higgins will lead State commemorations at Glasnevin Cemetery in Dublin this morning.

The President will speak at the event, which will include the National flag, military honours and wreath laying.

Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Josepha Madigan will unveil five Victoria Cross commemorative plaques at the cemetery.

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar will represent the State at the Armistice centenary ceremony at the Arc de Triomphe in Paris.

Tanaiste Simon Coveney will attend commemorations in Belfast. Business, Enterprise and Innovation Minister Heather Humphreys will attend ceremonies in Enniskillen.

Justice and Equality Minister Charles Flanagan will attend a Service of Thanksgiving at Westminster Abbey in London.

A people's commemoration will take place at the Irish National War Memorial at Islandbridge in Dublin, in association with the Royal British Legion, where the names of almost 50,000 Irish people who died in the conflict are inscribed.

A commemoration took place yesterday in Bray, County Wicklow, at a tall Celtic cross war memorial bearing the names of 155 men who died in World War 1.

A crowd stood in heavy rain as Bray Choral Society sang Abide With Me and Nearer My God To Thee and local church representatives led prayers.

Among the speakers were Michael Grant and William Lennon of the Western Front Association, Dublin branch, and Jim Scannell and Brian White of the Bray Cualann Historical Society.

Among those laying wreaths were Pat Vance, Cathaoirleach of Wicklow County Council, and Lord Meath, both of whom had relatives killed in the war. Glenageary resident Michael Lee laid poppy crosses in memory of his two grand-uncles from Bray who lost their lives in the conflict.

National and UN flags were carried by an honour guard from the Irish United Nations Veterans Association.

Sunday Independent

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