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Going wild in memory of the Manchester Pals

Press release   •   Jul 23, 2014 15:52 BST

Rochdale Borough Council is delivering an afternoon of woodland den building for children on Sunday 27 July, with a special emphasis on commemorating the Manchester Old Pals Regiment, to mark the outbreak of World War One.

Youngsters can take part in a whole host of fun activities and games organised by NatureEd rangers, whilst celebrating the rich history of a regiment, which set up camp in Ealees during the late summer of 1914.

Councillor Jacqui Beswick, Cabinet Member for Housing and Environment said:

“NatureEd continues to provide an exceptional activity programme for the young people of our borough. I am particularly pleased that they are choosing to commemorate the Manchester Regiment, in this symbolic centenary year of World War One.”

Councillor Alan McCarthy, Lead Member for the Armed Forces, said:

“The Manchester Pals were local lads, who fought and died to preserve the freedoms and liberties we hold dear today. It’s wonderful that young people will have the opportunity to discover the history of these men, whilst learning practical skills in a fun and enjoyable environment.”

Following the outbreak of war in the summer of 1914 the Old Pals battalions were formed and incorporated into the wider Manchester Regiment. They set up camp in the Ealees Valley, with Hollingworth Lake briefly becoming the scene of fervent military activity. The Regiment would go on to fight with great distinction in the French and Middle-Eastern campaigns.

All guests should meet at the Hollingworth Lake Visitor’s Centre at 1pm, the event will last for three hours and will cost £2.50 per person. Children must be accompanied by an adult.

For more details and to book a place contact The Visitor Centre on 01706 373421. 

This event is being delivered by NatureEd as part of Rochdale’s Countryside Events Programme commemorating WW1 and supported by the Heritage Lottery.

It’s one of a host of events across the borough this year commemorating the 100th anniversary of the First World War. To find out more visit

Rochdale was one of the first councils in the country to sign the Armed Forces Community Covenant, aimed at encouraging local communities to support services that promote and encourage activities that help integrate Armed Forces personnel back into civilian life. 

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