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Cannon fired in Co Down to mark 100 years since Gallipoli

By Staff Reporter

Published 27/04/2015

Grenville Francis sounds the Last Post at a special event at Grey Point Fort, Helen’s Bay
Grenville Francis sounds the Last Post at a special event at Grey Point Fort, Helen’s Bay
Senior Naval Officer Northern Ireland, Commander John Gray and History Hub Ulster chair Karen O’Rawe stand in front of Turkish minehunter TCG Anamur in Belfast Port commemorating the Gallipoli landings as part of the Last Post Project. On the baglama is Ioannis Tsioulakis and on violin is Clare Galway
A memorial for Great War hero Robert Morrow in Newmills

A Cannon has been fired in Helen's Bay to mark the centenary of the Gallipoli landings.

The thousands of Australian and New Zealand forces who died during the First World War's disastrous Gallipoli campaign were commemorated in ceremony's led by the Queen in London.

In Co Down, the cannon was fired to remember an estimated 145,000 soldiers who lost their lives in the 1915 offensive against Ottoman forces.

Pastor Brian Madden, one of the organisers, said: "Many who went out didn't come back home again and I think it's important that we do remember those people.

"I know there are events taking place all around the world now and they call it Anzac Day and they remember and mourn in Australia and New Zealand, but I think it's important when you remember 3,000 Irishmen died in the battle as well, that we do commemorate it here in Ireland."

The Queen led the nation in honouring the Anzac troops at a moving Cenotaph ceremony in London, while the Prince of Wales was in Turkey with Prince Harry, close to the Gallipoli battle sites, to pay tribute with world leaders to all those who fought.

At a dawn service at London's Wellington Arch, thousands of Australians and New Zealanders had gathered to pay their respects to relatives and past countrymen.

More than half-a-million Commonwealth and Irish soldiers fought during the campaign.

Almost 36,000 Commonwealth servicemen are buried or commemorated on Gallipoli, including nearly 25,000 members of British and Irish forces, over 7,200 of Australian forces, more than 2,300 of New Zealand forces, and more than 1,500 members of the Indian army.

Meanwhile, a memorial parade and plaque unveiling was held in Newmills, Co Tyrone, yesterday to mark the 100th anniversary of the death of 23-year-old Private Robert Morrow VC, who lost his life near Messines while saving others on April 12, 1915.

Under heavy enemy fire, he rescued and carried several men to safety who had been buried in the debris of trenches wrecked by shellfire.

The private in the 1st Battalion, The Royal Irish Fusiliers, was killed in action two weeks later at St Jan on the Ypres Salient, Belgium.

Wreaths were laid at Private Morrow's memorial in Newmills in a ceremony which was attended by members of the Royal British Legion, politicians and local dignitaries.

Belfast Telegraph

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