Hundreds of people gathered for a memorial service and the release of 100 balloons to commemorate the sacrifices made by the Accrington Pals Regiment.
Families, cadets, Pals relatives and Royal British Legion members joined with dignitaries and Mayors from across Lancashire for a special ceremony yesterday to kickstart Hyndburn's tributes to the Pals.
A ceremony was held on Broadway in Accrington where Hyndburn Mayor Judith Addison officially launched the new Pals banner featuring images taken from the archives of historian Bill Turner.
Fifty young cadets then released two balloons each into the air to mark the 100th anniversary of the First World War.
The Accrington Pipe Band entertained visitors including youngsters from Oswaldtwistle Civic Centre and Spring Hill Primary School who soaked up the atmosphere on the bright sunny afternoon.
Coun Addison called it a 'magnificent banner' and praised all those who helped make it possible.
She told the crowd: “This is truly a wonderful memorial. The banner will form part of a nationwide historic commemoration of the centenary of the start of the First World War.
“As a borough we anticipate it will provide a focal point and a major part in the promotion of our First World War commemorations.”
Cath Holmes, whose great-uncle Walter was killed in September 1918, said the event went 'really well'.
She said: “It's nice to see the banner up finally after 18 months of talking about it.
“It is quite an emotional time. I'm amazed that 100 years on people are still talking about it and know about it.”
More than 400 people then packed into St John's The Evangelist Church in Accrington for a poignant service led by Rev Gerald Higham.
Colours, standards and banners from uniformed organisations were marched into the church and the service included singing from the Cantoris Choir of St Christopher's High School.
Pals historian Les Bond wrote and co-performed a specially written song in tribute to the regiment called 'A Hundred Years On (and we're still not forgotten).
Guest of honour Ruth Turner, who is the widow of Bill Turner, said it was a 'marvellous day'.
She said: “It's been very special to me because of the banner and the centenary commemorations and it would have been very special to Bill.
“The church service was absolutely wonderful. I thought it was all spectacular and quite emotional.
“We were helped by the good weather as had it been bad day not as many people would have turned up. It made it even more special.”
Coun Doug Hayes, Armed Forces Champion, said it was a 'brilliant turnout'.
He said: “It is fantastic and just shows the feeling that's been here for a long time. It has helped bring it all out.
“Even after 100 years peoples till want to remember and come forward and give everything.”
Hyndburn council leader Miles Parkinson said it was a 'poignant' afternoon.
He said: “We are exceedingly pleased. It was a very dignified ceremony and quite emotive when the balloons were released.”
Visit the Accrington Observer website for more pictures and video of the events.