THIS year marks the centenary of the outbreak of the First World War. East Lancs soldiers who fought and died in the conflict will be remembered with special services and events.

Poignant tributes will be paid to our war heroes, especially the Accrington Pals who lost their lives on the first day of the Battle of the Somme.

Commemoration plans are also now being drawn up in towns and villages across East Lancashire.

The latest scheme could see oak trees planted in every parish in the Ribble Valley, if the council decides to give it the thumbs-up.

Poppy seeds would also be given to all schools so that children can plant them and learn about the soldiers’ sacrifice.

A similar scheme is already under way in Burnley to create a poppy garden on a patch of land where people can sit and reflect.

Crosses featuring the names of every soldier who died in the war are also being planted in Towneley Park.

The war may seem like a long time ago but it is important never to forget these soldiers, many of whom were mere boys, going off to fight and die in a foreign land.

It is also important for the next generation to get involved in the commemorations.

Oak trees and poppy gardens will be their lasting legacy for the next 100 years.