The Ensuring We Remember Campaign are proud to have supported a day of events in Liverpool on Tuesday 21 March. 15 young people from Everton FC Academy and 15 from Liverpool FC Academy were brought together by the project The Unremembered: World War One’s Army of Workers to remember the sacrifice of the Chinese Labour Corps and those buried in Liverpool.
The two teams – which usually meet as rivals on the pitch – came together to visit five Chinese Labour Corps graves at Anfield Cemetery, which is situated between the two clubs. They were met by Mr Tam from SeeYep Association, to learn about the Labour Corps and Chinese customs. At the graves, the teams laid white flowers, bowed in respect and held a reading about the Chinese Labour Corps. They then lit 30 white candles embossed with both club emblems, whilst Zilan Liao of Pagoda Arts performed a moving rendition of the Last Post on the Chinese flute.
Following the visit to the cemetery, the two Academy teams visited Chinatown where Liverpool’s Chinese community support for the day’s events continued, providing a tour of Chinatown in which team members learned about the history of the Chinese in the UK and of Chinatown in Liverpool – the oldest Chinatown in the UK, home to the oldest Chinese community in Europe.
Communities Minister, Lord Bourne, said:
“The war effort required a great many people from a great many countries, whose bravery and service was so crucial to the Allied victory.
The Chinese Labour Corps formed the largest contingent of workers recruited, but too little is known of the dangerous yet essential work they carried out on the Western Front. They came to Britain’s aid in her hour of need. So it’s right that we remember and honour the contribution of every one of the brave men who served.”
The event is part of The Unremembered: World War One’s Army of Workers, which is running for the duration of 2017 – 100 years after the Labour Corp were recruited. The Unremembered is funded by Department for Communities and Local Government and delivered by the Big Ideas Company.
Virginia Crompton, Chief Executive of Big Ideas Company, commented:
“It’s important to acknowledge the vital contribution of so many who were marginalised by society 100 years ago and should not be marginalised today in our commemoration.”
If you have any questions or would like to get involved in The Unremembered project, or receive a Resource Pack contact Sarah Giles, Big Ideas Company Engagement Manager firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.theunremembered.org.