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Barford prepares for its First World War event transformation

16:24 03 September 2014

St Botolph

St Botolph's church, where displays about the First World War will be held.

Archant

Barford will be transforming itself into a First World War-era village when it takes part in the National Heritage Open Days later this 
month.

A photograph during the time of the First World War, showing the Cock Inn in Barford Village.A photograph during the time of the First World War, showing the Cock Inn in Barford Village.

The event, which takes place on Saturday, September 13 and 14, from 10am-4pm, is part of commemorations to mark the centenary of the conflict’s outbreak, which will see Barford joining forces with surrounding villages and towns along the Yare and Tiffey Valleys to transform their villages.

Around Barford there will be exhibitions and singing entertainment and buildings will be transformed, including The Cock Inn, which will become a recruiting station. It will be staging evening entertainment where rations can be eaten and pennies exchanged for drinks.

The village hall will become a vintage tearoom, welcoming the Norfolk regiment in uniform displaying weapons and medals, St Botolph’s Church will host displays revealing the lost stories behind the names on the village war memorials, archive films shown throughout the village, and the primary school will house exhibitions and activities for children.

Barford lost nine men during the Great War, including brothers Private Charles Edward Fisher, 19 and Lance Corporal Robert John Fisher, 23, who are commemorated on a memorial at St Botolph’s church.

The Old Shepherd's hut, formerly a home for a German Prisoner of War will be open at the Barford World War One Heritage event.The Old Shepherd's hut, formerly a home for a German Prisoner of War will be open at the Barford World War One Heritage event.

Chairman of the Barford History and Community group, Ian McDonald, said it was important that the village remembered the First World War and the impact it had on the countryside.

“We believe it is important to hold this event with surrounding villages and towns because of the hidden impact that the war had on the communities,” said Mr McDonald.

“Horses were taken by the army, land used for airfields, guns and searchlight batteries and workers, fathers, sons and bread winners taken from their rural environments, some never to return.

“Our free event offers to show the public how people pulled together to overcome the impact of the war on the home front.”

The villages of Barnham Broom, Bawburgh, Marlingford, Mattishall, Whinburgh, Westfield and Wramplingham will also be taking part in the free event.

• For more information, visit barfordhistory.org or heritageopendays.org.uk

• If you would like to publicise an event linked to the centenary, submit details – using the words “First World War” in your description to What’s On Listings, Norfolk Editorial, Prospect House, Rouen Road, Norwich, NR1 1RE.

• For more in depth stories from the First World War, click here.

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