An exhibition and two concerts will commemorate the 100th anniversary of the First World War at St John’s Church, Spitalgate.
The commemoration will be called Grantham Remembers. The concerts will take place on Saturday, November 15, at the end of a two week exhibition starting on November 1.
The concerts, one in the afternoon and another in the evening, will feature St John’s choir directed by Geoff Winter. The concerts will also feature traditional music and songs from the Great War. Belvoir Wassailers will take part together with local folk groups and soloists. Poetry and prose will be read during the concerts.
Entry will be free, but special commemorative booklets will be on sale and proceeds will go to the Royal British Legion and Friends of St John’s Church. The Legion will also be selling poppies.
The exhibition will be set up in the church for people to visit. It will be a combination of the history of the war in general and a focus on local history.
Local historian Malcolm Knapp will be giving two talks in the church. On November 1 he will talk about “Bygone Grantham, World War 1” and on November 8 there will be a talk about his visits to the Somme and Ypres.
Charmaine Morgan, who is helping to organise the event, said: “This will commemorate not only the Machine Gun Corps at Belton, but also the Royal Flying Corps, now the RAF, which played such a vital role in the war and whose pilots were trained in Grantham and Harlaxton. Representatives from the Armed Forces will be invited with the community and dignitaries.”
Grantham library has been a vital source of material for the exhibition.
Schools will also be invited to the exhibition and classes will be able to visit as part of their curriculum and it is envisaged pupils will be able to do a number of activities.
There will also be a focus on local people who played an important role during the war including first policewoman Edith Smith and Alfred Ball, who attended King’s School and won a Victoria Cross.
Mrs Morgan would also like to hear from any organisations who would like tickets for larger groups or any businesses who would like to sponsor the exhbition. If you can help with the exhibition or would like group tickets email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01476 574748.
For more details on the education programme associated with the exhibition call Jayne Robb on 07828 039628.
If you can help with period items for the exhibition call Patsy Ellis on 07758 388526.
Tickets will be available from the Guildhall Arts Centre box office and the library on a first come, first served basis.