LEST WE FORGET
They shall not grow old as we that are left grow old. Age shall not weary them not the years condemn. At the going down of the sun and in the morn We will remember them
And they were remembered last Saturday at the 11th hour, on the 11th day of the 11th month at Market Square, Enniscorthy, when the names of 102 men frwom the town and district who left their homes and families over 100 years ago to fight in the Great War and never returned, were read aloud by members of Enniscorthy Historical Re-enactment Society as part of a one-day event to commemorate the 99th anniversary of Armistice Day.
The day began with the laying of a wreath at the war memorial plaque at St Mary’s Church and a prayer for all the Enniscorthy dead by Rev Nicola Halford. This was followed by a dignified and solemn ceremony at Market Square, beginning with the reading by Town Manager Liz Hore of that beautiful and emotive poem ‘In Flanders Fields’, a lament by piper Liam Doyle, a roll call of honour by Maria Nolan and Graham Cadogan, a very moving poem penned and recited by Kay Doyle for her late father Thomas Colfer and a Reverse Arms respectfully and meticulously performed by members of Enniscorthy Historical Re-enactment Society.
From there it was on to the Athenaeum where a Living History exhibition was provided by EHRS, Grainne Doran, County Archivist and Lord Edward’s Own and Ashbourne Re-enactment groups.
The exhibition attracted over 300 visitors, with many of the families of those who fought and died in the Great War attending and were delighted and most appreciative with the opportunity to finally be able to speak proudly and openly of their family member in WW1.
It was moving and extremely interesting to hear their stories. Many of the young men from the town and beyond left for a variety of reasons, some were part of the 100,000 who went with Redmond believing that if they helped Britain to win the war for the freedom of small nations then she might finally agree to grant Independence to our own small nation, others went for the adventure and excitement and many went simply to put food into the mouths of their families.
But for whatever reason they left, they were part and parcel of the fabric and the history of this town and deserve to be acknowledged and remembered. Enniscorthy Historical Re-enactment Society were delighted with the response to this commemoration, the first of its kind in the town and look forward to building a bigger and better event for the 100th Anniversary of Armistice Day in 2018.
Events concluded that evening with an excellent concert by Brendan McQuaile at the Athenaeum - March Away My Brothers - the story of Irish soldiers and their music in the Great War.
Enniscorthy Re-enactment society during the Armmistice Day Commemoration on Saturday.
Kay Doyle, whose late father Thomas Colfer fought in the Great War, recites a poem she wrote herself for the commemoration.