Hundreds lined the streets to pay their respects to the men who served in the Chorley Pals and Chorley Terriers as new plaques to the units were unveiled by the town’s MP and mayor.
Organised by The Chorley Pals Memorial Trust, the unveiling took place outside the Army Reserve Centre in Devonshire Road where Chorley MP Sir Lindsay Hoyle and Chorley Mayor, Coun Margaret Lees, unveiled the two stone plaques on the building’s wall.
The unveiling took place on Saturday morning after a well watched parade led by the Band of the King’s Division, based at nearby Weeton Barracks, in a ceremony to mark 100 years since the end of the First World War.
Speaking before the unveiling, Sir Lindsay Hoyle MP said: “The two units totalling 450 men were just a handful of the thousands of men and woman who served their country in the first world war. And lots of those thousands came from Chorley and the districts around us."
Sir Lindsay, the Deputy Speaker of the House of Commons and co-founder of the Chorley Pals Memorial Trust, added: “And many of them, who were known as the Tommies, would have used this drill hall and joined up at the recruitment office in the centre of Chorley and went direct to their units and many never to return.
“So it wasn’t as we say just the Terriers and the Pals, we also remember those who joined those other regiments who served and were the proud sons and daughters of this town and villages that surround us.”
Invited guests, including some 50 relatives of the Pals and Terriers, then took the halls of the former Drill Hall for a group photograph similar to when their relatives before they departed for war – the Terriers on August 6, 1914, and the Pals on February 23, 1915.
The day was a personal one for Mayor Lees, whose grandfather Private John Lawrenson died in the Battle of the Somme in 1916 after being shot on the first day. He died three days later from his injuries.