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""Facts and figures just don't compare to having this experience...It's a life changing experience and I really enjoyed it""Rachael, Community Worker

In the beginning...

On a cold wet November day in 1996 Glen Barr stood for the first time at the colossal Thiepval Commonwealth Monument on the Somme bearing the names of 74,000 soldiers who had perished in that slaughterhouse in 1916 and who have no known graves. Along with 49 other people from different backgrounds and different parts of Ireland who made this historic journey not a word was uttered as each and every one of them choked backed their emotions.

The short distance to the Ulster Tower commemorating the sacrifice of the men of the 36th Ulster Division only intensified those emotions. Glenn pictured his father, brother and his mother's four brothers all ‘going over the top' on the 1st July 1916 into the greatest single disaster in the history of the British army. However, arriving at the little village of Guillimont only 5 or 6 miles away nothing could prepare him for the sight that was to confront them. Here, where the men of the Nationalist 16th Irish Division had fought and died, there was a neglected Celtic cross, surrounded by a rusting metal railing, bearing the inscription in Irish, translated into English, "TO THE GLORY OF GOD AND THE HONOUR OF IRELAND".
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