Lights go out at public buildings to remember the outbreak of the First World War

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First published in News

THE lights at public buildings across Craven will go out on Monday to commemorate the outbreak of the First World War 100 years ago.

It is part of a national initiative, inspired by Foreign Secretary Sir Edward Grey's comment to Parliament on the day before war was declared that: "The lamps are going out all over Europe; we shall not see them lit again in our lifetime".

Now, exactly 100 years after Britain declared war on Germany, public buildings across Craven will join the Lights Out event to remember those who lost their lives during the conflict.

Along with national institutions such as the Houses of Parliament and the BBC, Craven's public buildings will be shrouded in darkness from 10pm to 11pm on Monday, with just a single light or candle left on for a shared moment of reflection.

Affected will be Skipton Town Hall, Skipton Library, Glusburn Institute, the Folly at Settle and Settle Tourist Information, where information about the event and how the public can get involved will be on display.

District councillor Simon Myers said: “By transforming the appearance of public buildings across Craven, we hope that the public will get involved in this memorial by lighting a single light or candle in their own home, and spending some time in thought remembering all those who were involved in the conflict.”

Craven’s contribution to the event is being co-ordinated by the Heritage Lottery-funded Craven and the First World War project, which is planning a series of events to mark the centenary.

Project officer Rob Freeman said: “The Lights Out memorial event will provide a haunting and poignant echo of Sir Edwards Grey’s famous remark that he made on the eve of war about the lamps going out over Europe, ushering in one of the darkest periods in our history.

"It is an opportunity 100 years later for every member of every community to have their own personal thoughts about what the outbreak of World War One means to them.”

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