Express & Star

Drums which honoured Walsall war heroes

Thousands turned out for this ceremony almost 100 years ago when Walsall honoured some of its Great War heroes.

Walsall Mayor Henry Hucker presented the drums.

As you can see from this picture taken from our archives, drums were a central element. Which raises the question – where are they now?

The event was on Sunday, July 26, 1925, at what was then the Hillary Street football ground, which would later be named Fellows Park.

Between two and three thousand people were there for the ceremony in which the battle honours on the colours of the 5th Battalion South Staffordshire Regiment were consecrated and new drums presented by the Mayor, Henry Hucker, on the left, who said the drums had been given very generously by the townspeople.

The parade was organised to mark the distinctions and honours gained by all ranks during the Great War, and as a tribute of respect to those who fell.

The battalion, a Territorial Army unit, marched from the Drill Hall to the ground, where they were formed up in line with the new drums – which were presented by the people of Walsall to the regiment – piled in front of them.

During the ceremony the mayor said he hoped the drums would serve as a lasting memory to those who took part in the Great War and to those who made the supreme sacrifice.

Incidentally this photo was not used with the Star's report of the event, so it's possible that this is the first time it's been published.