South Queensferry joins Royals to pay respects

editorial image

Royals, politicians and dignitaries joined with townspeople to remember the 9000 sailors of both sides who lost their lives in the greatest sea battle of World War One.

Hundreds lined the street of South Queensferry on Saturday to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Battle of Jutland.

HRH The Princess Royal was joined by her husband, Vice Admiral Sir Tim Laurence and First Minister Nicola Sturgeon for a service at the town’s Commonwealth War Graves Commission Cemetery where 40 casualties from the battle are buried and commemorated.

Singer Barbara Dickson, whose uncle was killed in the Battle of the Somme, sang the lament Flowers as the Forest as a wreath was laid by Princess Anne on behalf of the nation.

Along with Sir Tim and the First Minister, she then met with sons, daughters, grandchildren and great-grandchildren of those who served in the battle, along with pupils from Queensferry Community High School, Broxburn Academy and visiting schoolchildren from Wilhelmshaven in Germany.

Sean Stone from Queensferry High and a Wilhelmshaven pupil then laid a wreath in the cemetery.

Evie Dramsfield and Rachel Bowden from the South Queensferry secondary then presented the Royal couple with a Roll of Honour, the culmination of a two-year research project led by the University of Edinburgh’s Scotland’s War Project, working with pupils to research and record the lives and stories behind the men buried in the town’s 188 Commonwealth War Graves.

Hundreds were at Hawes Pie to greet the Royals and First Minister, who met locals who worked tirelessly to research the battle and document the area’s role.

Edinburgh’s Lord Provost Donald Wilson said: “It is incredibly touching that, 100 years on, people from all over Scotland and Germany have come together to remember this shared piece of World War One history in Queensferry.”