Look: Porthcawl and the Great War event heralded ‘a fantastic day’

Porthcawl turned the clock back 100 years yesterday to commemorate the time Britain entered the Great War.

A band of Suffragettes marched through the town’s John Street, with some protesters being arrested by a 1914 policeman in authentic uniform, played by Paul Harris, of Swansea Pals Historical Re-enactment Company.

A World War I-era recruitment sergeant also put prospective soldiers through their paces outside the museum, while historical talks took place in the Y Centre.

Many shops also dressed their windows with commemorative objects and designs. Jan Williams, of Janz Art, won first prize in the best window display competition, after filling the front of her shop with about a dozen new watercolour and acrylic paintings of poppies, the symbol of remembrance.


View gallery

View gallery


 

Meanwhile, in Cardiff, more than 100 people gathered at a special World War I remembrance event to pay respect to their late relatives who fought for their country.

The commemoration, hosted by a local history society in Grangetown, took place om Saturday at Grange Gardens park and included military displays, people dressed in period uniform, the attendance of the Goat Major and his mascot Shenkin of the Welsh Regiment, and a band.

At the Porthcawl event, town mayor Sean Aspey, who dressed in the same clothes the town mayor would have worn in 1914, said: “This has been a fantastic day for all of our friends and visitors that serves as a timely reminder of those who gave their lives all those years ago.”

He said that following an announcement by Bridgend Council last week that it intended to sell off the building housing Porthcawl Museum – which organised Saturday’s event – that he had been “swamped with comments and extreme concerns” about the building’s future.

Ceri Joseph, secretary of Porthcawl Museum and Historical Society, said Saturday’s event had been designed to further raise the profile of the museum, which has seen a surge in volunteering and support over the last few years after the committee had dwindled to just four members.

The museum signed up to become a member of the Imperial War Museum First World War Centenary Partnership around three years ago and then Ceri set about researching the role the Great War played in Porthcawl’s history, spending thousands of hours searching through archives at Bridgend’s local and family history centre at Ty’r Ardd, Bridgend.

The museum’s comprehensive World War I exhibition, which features a life-size replica of a battlefield trench, opened in April and Ceri said to date, more than 2,000 people have toured the display.

“It looks likely we are going to break all attendance records this year,” she added.

“I would like to thank David and Chris Swidenbank, who have worked so hard to make this a successful day and Glenys Davies, who has worked very hard to keep the museum going.”

Article source: http://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/local-news/look-porthcawl-great-war-event-7555178