Abbey Holds Vigil and Requiem to Mark Somme Centenary
Friday, 1st July 2016
A Vigil and Requiem to Commemorate the Centenary of the Battle of the Somme* was held at Westminster Abbey on Friday 1st July 2016.
The Abbey had been open through the night for a Vigil to mark the centenary of the Battle of the Somme and a Watch at the Grave of the Unknown Warrior changed every 15 minutes. The final Watch took up its position at 7.15 am.
At 7.25 am the Left Half Battery of The King's Troop, Royal Horse Artillery, fired a bombardment in Parliament Square for one hundred seconds.
At 7.27 am Luke Thompson, actor, read An Account of the Battle by Corporal George Ashurst (1895-1988) 1st Battalion, The Lancashire Fusiliers.
At 7.30 am Second Lieutenant Matthew Narey, 2nd Battalion, The Yorkshire Regiment, blew a trench whistle issued in 1915 to commemorate the centenary of the moment at which the Battle of the Somme was joined.
The final Watch departed from the Grave of the Unknown Warrior through the Great West Door in silence.