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Lights out in Tower Hamlets tonight to mark outbreak of First World War

PUBLISHED: 17:58 04 August 2014 | UPDATED: 17:58 04 August 2014

Lights will be turned off in council offices across Tower Hamlets tonight as part of a country-wide initiative to mark the moment that the UK entered the First World War 100 years ago.

The centenary will be commemorated with the switching off of all lights in the Town Hall, Mulberry Place, Jack Dash House, Albert Jacob House, Bromley Public Hall and Rushmead One Stop Shop between 10pm and 11pm.

Mayor Lutfur Rahman attended a memorial service outside Bethnal Green Library this morning.

The touching service was led by Reverend Alan Green and included readings by Reverend Maxwell Hutchinson, Reverend Christine Hall, Mushtaq Ahmed from Globe Town Mosque and Cultural Centre and Leon Silver from East London Central Synagogue.

Special guests included rifleman Paul Jacobs, who was awarded the George Medal for Bravery while serving in Afghanistan where he was blinded. Paul was only 19 when he served, the age of many who lost their lives during WWI.

Paul said: “It is important for everyone to learn from the history of what took place 100 years ago and unite as a community. The brave actions of those soldiers led to the modern world as we know it.”

Rev Alan Green added: “We have gathered around this memorial today to remember all those from this community who were caught up in the courageous but tragic events of the First World War.

“We remember those who were killed in action, or by disease, the bereaved, the lost, the families which were shattered, the wounded, maimed and injured, those who held in silence unspeakable memories of warfare.”

The Mayor laid a wreath with Paul at the foot of the memorial as a mark of respect.

The Mayor said: “With the last survivors of the First World War no longer with us, it is all the more important we remember their sacrifice and reflect on the events that so shaped the course of history.”

For full details about centenary events in Tower Hamlets visit towerhamlets.gov.uk/ideastore

Read more:

First World War: Police rally to remember officers from across east London who died in war

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