09 Nov 2018
This year’s Remembrance Sunday coincided with Armistice Day, which marked the centenary of the end of World War One.
Services to commemorate the day took place across Europe, including a major ceremony in Glasgow. The city had a major part to play in what became known as the Great War as thousands upon thousands of men joined the war effort.
Members of Glasgow Chamber of Commerce were equally as eager to contribute and so as part of the rapid expansion of the regular army a battalion was formed. On 3 September 1914, following a unanimous decision by the Chamber leadership, the 17th Highland Light Infantry (Glasgow Chamber of Commerce Battalion) came into being.
Recruitment for the battalion took place in Merchants' House and the 17th Battalion was quickly established. Towards the end of 1914 right through to the summer of 1915 the battalion trained at both Gailes and Troon in Ayrshire before embarking on further training in England. On the 22 November 1915 training was completed and the battalion departed for the Port of Havre in France.
The battalion quickly settled into the routine of the trenches where they endured a "hard and monotonous" winter. As the war drew on the battalion, like many others, were present at the disastrous Battle of the Somme in July 1916. More than half of its men were killed or wounded, At the battalion roll call on the July 4, casualties totalled 22 officers and 447 other ranks.
The battalion was disbanded in early 1918 after a decision by the War Office and its colours were laid in Glasgow Cathedral.
This year, a two-minute silence was observed at 11am at the cenotaph in George Square to mark Remembrance Sunday.
Lord Provost Eva Bolander, in her role as Lord Lieutenant, led Sunday’s ceremony and the Moderator of Glasgow Presbytery, the Reverend Henderson led prayers.
The Lord Provost commented: “Remembrance Sunday is a day for reflection and gratitude for those who gave their lives in conflict to preserve our freedoms. Glasgow owes its military and veterans a great debt. This is an especially poignant service because it also signals the centenary of the end of the Great War.”
Also attending the service will be Baroness Goldie of Bishopton, representing the Secretary of State for Scotland, Graeme Day MSP for the First Minister, Brigadier Robin Lindsay, representing the Army, Commodore J Perks, representing the Royal Navy and Group Captain Alan Cowan representing the RAF.
Representatives from Legion Scotland, serving military and clergy were also present.
The Lord Provost later accompanied HRH The Princess Royal at a service at Glasgow Cathedral at 4pm, to commemorate the centenary of the end of the War.