Sid Valley joins lights out to mark WW1’s centenary

12:55 10 August 2014

Lights were extinguished across the Sid Valley for

Lights were extinguished across the Sid Valley for 'Lights Out' to mark the centenary of the outbreak of World War One. Picture by Graham Cooper.


Homeowners across the Sid Valley extinguished their lights in the lead up to the moment, exactly 100 years ago, that Britain declared war on Germany.

They joined a country-wide commemoration, leaving only a single candle lit in each house between 10pm and 11pm on Monday.

The moment of shared reflection was organised by 14-18 Now, the official cultural programme for the World War One centenary commemoration.

Sidmouth Town Council chairman John Hollick, who joined in, said: “It was different and another way of making people aware.

“I hope that people did observe, and those who didn’t still appreciate why it was done.”

More than 140 explorer scouts and leaders from across Devon carried lights to the top of the ten tors on Dartmoor and extinguished them at 11pm. East Devon’s Axe Air Explorers then camped out in the wind and rain.

Will Grant, 17, said: “It was very moving. From Laughter Tor, we could see six of the other tors and we could see when all the lights went out.

“It makes you think that someone of my age could have gone to war and never come back.”

Inspiration for ‘Lights Out’ came from a famous remark made on the eve of the outbreak of war by the then Foreign Secretary, Sir Edward Grey, who said: “The lamps are going out all over Europe; we shall not see them lit again in our lifetime.”

Britain declared war on Germany at 11pm on August 4, 1914, ushering in one of the darkest periods in the country’s history.

Jenny Waldman, the director of 14-18 Now, said: “I would like to thank all those who took part in Lights Out across the UK and helped to make it such a moving and fitting tribute to those who gave their lives in World War One.”

The organisers credited it as one of the most dramatic UK-wide events ever staged.


Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Sidmouth Herald visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Sidmouth Herald staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Sidmouth Herald account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Other News Stories

58 minutes ago
Sidmouth Surf Life Saving Club take on the River Dart Struggle

A group from Sidmouth Surf Life Saving Club (SSLSC) negotiated a ramshackle craft through rapids and weirs to a third-place finish in one of the toughest raft races in the country.

Read more
Alma Bridge. Ref shs 8760-10-15SH. Picture: Simon Horn

A vital footway across the River Sid may have to close if cliff erosion in the area worsens, according to County Hall.

Read more
Matt Booth

The results of yesterday’s (Thursday) Sidmouth Town Council by-election have been announced.

Read more
Yesterday, 13:25
The Sidmouth Friends of the Samaritans held their AGM this week. Pictured are chairman Sue Kensdale with from left Ron Harbour (treasurer), vice chairman Gerald Hayne and Denis Jones (sec). Photo by Simon Horn. Ref shs 3446-08-14SH. To order your copy of this photograph go to

A long-running fundraising group, which has donated more than £114,000 to charity, is to fold as it cannot find a new committee.

Read more
Yesterday, 10:25
Daffodil bulb planting at Peak Hill in 2013. Picture by Alex Walton. Ref shs 6320-44-13AW. To order your copy of this photograph go to and click on Photo Orders

Planting this month is set to take Sidmouth past the half-way mark in turning it into the ‘Valley of a Million Bulbs’.

Read more
Wed, 16:25
EDDC's Knowle HQ. Ref shs 7705-15-12SH Picture: Simon Horn

Campaigners who have decided not to pursue a bid to secure legal protection for Knowle’s parkland claim the bid has cast doubt on future use of Localism legislation in East Devon.

Read more
Wed, 12:25
The Radway cinema in Sidmouth. Photo by Simon Horn. Ref shs 7345-13-14SH To order your copy of this photograph go to and click on Photo Orders

James Bond fans need to act fast as tickets for a VIP screening of the super-spy’s latest silver screen outing have almost sold out.

Read more
Wed, 06:25
Prospective town councillors Matt Booth and Deirdre Hounsom

Residents in the West ward will go to the polls tomorrow (October 8) to fill a vacancy on Sidmouth Town Council.

Read more
Tue, 14:38
AA Awards

Recognition from industry’s ‘Oscars’ helps put county on the map

Read more
Tue, 12:25
Bill Beaumont presents a Legacy Gold Standard award to Lester Wilmington, chairman of Sidmouth Rugby Club. Ref shs 0765-40-15AW. Picture: Alex Walton

Work at grass-roots level has scored Sidmouth Rugby Club a national gold award and recognition from one of the sport’s legends.

Read more

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 15°C

min temp: 10°C

Most Read News

Great British Life

Great British Life

Useful Links

Family notices
Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Submit a Story
Buy Photos
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Read the Sidmouth Herald e-edition E-edition

Find a job in Sidmouth

Local business directory

Devon's trusted business finder

Find planning applications