The Bushmills and the Great War exhibition begins in the Bushmills Community Centre on July 1st at 10am.
The reason for the opening on July 1 is to remember the 26 Bushmills men who lost their lives on that day in 1916, the first day of the Battle of the Somme. Among the men lost on that day was Sir Harry Macnaghten and it was this man that Robert Quigg was searching for when he won the Victoria Cross.
Admission to the exhibition is free but it is hoped that people will give a voluntary donation to help raise a statue to the VC winner.
There are many items that have never been on display before and among them a set of local medals. Those medals have recently been handed in by the family and are very much appreciate and will be on display each year. Other items have been donated by a Portstewart family and by people from farther afield whose relatives were lost in the Great War and are covered in some of Robert Thompson’s other books.
This is going to be the best display so far and a Military Cross won by a local man will be one of the latest items. There are also two Military Medals. The exhibition will be opened by ‘The Roamer’ from the Newsletter while, Jeff Kildea, who is coming all the way from Australia, will also speak.
Following the publication of the ‘Bushmills Book of Remembrance’ a number of other names have come to light, mainly from the Ballintoy area and if enough stories come forward through the exhibition Mr Thompson may do a re-print.
The exhibition runs for a fortnight, 10am to 7pm with Sundays 2pm to 5pm.