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To mark the centenary of the Battle of the Somme, The Bishop of Liverpool, The Rt. Rev Paul Bayes will lead services at Walton Church and The Alsop High School to commemorate the young men from Walton who gave their lives during this battle.
The Battle of the Somme lasted for 141 days, from 1 July to 18 November 1916 and was the bloodiest battle of the First World War. The Somme has come to symbolise the enormous losses and dreadful conditions of the conflict.
The school is keen to trace relatives of Mr Percy Tucker and 29 soldiers who died at the Somme. Private Tucker who lived in Dyson Street was a Shipping Clerk and a much loved member of Walton Church. He was also a member of Walton Church Literary and Debating Society. Percival Joseph Tucker was one of those who responded to Lord Kitchener’s appeal for 100,000 volunteers.
Walton was deeply affected by the loss of men known as “Pals” who had gone to France and Belgium fight. Nearly 20,000 British soldiers at the Battle of the Somme. The “Walton Pals” battalion included a group of friends who were members of the Walton Church Young Men’s Bible Study Class. They were led by Percy Tucker. They were members of the Liverpool King’s Regiment. They joined together, fought together and unfortunately died together.
There are two memorials to these local men in Walton Church. The small silver chalice used for midweek communion services is inscribed in memory of Percy Tucker. A brass lectern commemorates the names of thirty members of the Young Men’s Bible Class who had perished during World War One.
Mr Joe Mangan, Headteacher comments:
“We felt it was important to commemorate the young men from our community who fell at the Battle of the Somme, which has come to symbolise the tragic scale and futility of modern industrialised warfare. Their sacrifice is as relevant today as ever but in this centenary year we pay special tribute to their Service.”
During a recent visit to the Somme Rose Healy and Jessica Daley laid a wreath in memory of Percy Tucker. This was laid during a poignant moment at Thiepval as part of a visit to France organised by WW1 Centenary Battlefield Tours.
Peter Bull Co-ordinator of HOPE 2016 comments:
“We are delighted that Bishop Paul will lead this commemoration. The story of the Walton Pals is inspirational. Somme 100 provides a poignant opportunity for young people to reflect upon and connect with history in a meaningful and tangible way”
During 2016 Alsop has worked with partner primary schools and Walton Group of Churches to facilitate a festival to tell stories of hope to both school and community. Inspirational speakers have brought stories of hope in the face of many obstacles and social injustice.
For more information about the Somme commemoration event please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.alsophighschool.org.uk
Ronald H BLORE
John U PRICE
Douglas S RAY
Percy Tom SIMPSON
John Bertrum SMALL
Percy J TUCKER