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News > School News > Gallipoli Parade 2024

Gallipoli Parade 2024

30 Apr 2024
School News

On the morning of the 28th of April, Cpt Cooper-Latham, Cpt Newton, Sgt Stewart and several cadets from our Army section took part in Bury's annual Gallipoli day commemorations.

This involved a parade through Bury town centre joining members of the regular and territorial battalions of the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers, the veterans association, the Fusilier band, Sea cadets representing the naval vessels involved and Fusilier cadets from the ACF. 

On the morning of the 25th of April 1915, the 1st Battalion of the Lancashire Fusiliers landed on 'W Beach' on the Gallipoli peninsula, a 320m long and 35m wide stretch of land they thought was minimally defended following a series of naval bombardments. What happened that morning would have a profound impact on the town of Bury for years to come. The Battalion suffered almost 70% casualties in the course of one morning, but the way most members of the regiment discuss it now is as the "6 VCs before breakfast". Referring to the 6 Victoria Crosses awarded to members of the battalion for that action, the most awarded for a single action in British Military history, with several potential awards not being given due to limits put in place by the military establishment. 

While no Bury Grammar alumni took part in that initial landing several would land 10 days later to continue the Gallipoli campaign as part of the 5th (Bury) Battalion, with three of our 'Fallen Swans' losing their lives in that campaign (2Lt. William Yapp, Pt. Gilbert Buxton, Cpl. George Mason). 

Bury was the Garrison town of the Lancashire Fusiliers, with their colours on display in Bury Parish Church, and remained the Regiments home until the amalgamation of the Fusilier Brigade to form the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers. The town maintains its link to the regiment through the Fusilier Museum in the town centre, activity of the Territorial Army and several cadet units, including our own CCF. 

Every year on the Sunday closest to the anniversary of the landings a parade is held in Bury town centre paired with a church service to remember these events and reflect on the meanings we can take from the actions on W beach in a modern world. Bury Grammar School CCF is proud in its position as the only CCF contingent to be invited to march as part of this parade. This is just a part of the school's long-standing relationship with the regiment, something we are proud of and look to continue to strengthen in future years. 

For more information about the 6VCs before breakfast, please click here.

 

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