Hayfield’s Commemorative Exhibition

Hayfield held a weeklong series of events to mark the outbreak of the First World War.  Bringing together young and old, veteran Albert Knowles, who was born in 1915 during the Great War and fought in the Second World War, jointly opened a commemorative exhibition at the village hall with 15-year-old Hayfield May Queen Ruth Eastwood. They struck a gong, reconstructed from a First World War shell, to mark the opening of the exhibition, which featured personal items, artefacts, memories and stories from local residents. Visitors could comment on the displays and add personal stories about their own families.

On Monday 4th August, a Parade went through the village, led by the Greater Manchester, Fire & Rescue Pipes and Drum Band, stopping at the War Memorial to lay a single white flower and rosemary wreath on behalf of the whole village, before a commemorative Church Service at St Matthew’s Church.

On the Tuesday  Terry Jackson, a historian, and Chairman of the Cheshire & Lancashire Western Front Association, gave a talk about the origins of WW1, ‘The July Crisis, 1914’ and the Church Hall displayed a collection of artwork by Vaughan Parker, an artist from Glossop whose work focuses on the trenches and the soldiers who fought in them.

On Thursday 7th August, Buxton Bard, Rob Stevens, and members of ‘Write from the Heart’ community writing group presented new works commemorating the war entitled ‘Remember Willy Beard.’

Hayfield Heritage Group was supported by the Derbyshire Lives Through the First World War Project.