Hundreds of Rugby citizens who died in First World War to be remembered at centenary

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The 404 Rugby citizens who died in the First World War and who are named on the Whitehall Recreation Ground Memorial Gates will be remembered this year.

Councillors and residents have decided to mark the event by planting a field of poppies in the recreation ground to represent Flanders, Ypres and the Somme where the flower of British youth had fallen.

Cllr Neil Sandison who is helping to organise the planting of the seeds in March, said: “Whitehall Rec has strong links to the Great War.

“The memorial gates were unveiled by Field Marshal John French, 1st Earl of Ypres on March 12 1922.

“A World War One tank stood by the gates for many years. We felt this was the most fitting place to make this tribute.”

Cllr Dale Keeling (Eastlands) said it was a fitting tribute to the fallen.

He added: “We will gain three things from this planting – the commemoration of all those who have fallen in armed conflicts, the rejuvenation of part of the recreation ground and an enhancement of the bio-diversity of the area as the local wildlife will benefit from the pollen produced by the poppies.”