Some 3,500 of those killed on that day were volunteers from amongst workers in the City of London and surrounds. Fields of Battle – Lands of Peace 14-18 was given the unique opportunity to assist in commemorating the brave men who left the City of London to fight at the Battle of the Somme.
Click to the left for a video profile of the exhibition as it appeared in Guildhall Yard, between June 1st and July 3rd 2016. Featuring interviews with Photographer Mike Sheil and Historian Sir Hew Strachan, this short video also includes moving public feedback, together with schoolchildrens' thoughts on the exhibition and the First World War itself.
Forming part of Belfast City Council’s wider ‘Decade Of Centenaries: Reflections On 1916’ programme, Fields of Battle Lands of Peace was outside Belfast City Hall between July and August 2016.
In April - August 2014 the exhibition was hosted in Paris by the French Sénat on the railings of the Jardins du Luxembourg where it was seen by over 2.1 million people during this four month period.
A subsequent exhibition was mounted with the support of the Heritage Lottery Fund and with the kind permission of The Royal Parks in St James’s Park, London, where 4.7 million visitors were recorded between August and November. This figure represented a 25% increase in visitors to the park over the same period for the previous year.
The exhibition then travelled to Nottingham City Centre where it was on display to the public between September and November as a central component of the City's 'Trent to Trenches' commemorative events programme.
In April 2015, the Turkish government commissioned a special exhibition for display in Istanbul and Ankara to mark the centenary of the Gallipoli campaign.
Fields of Battle 14-18 is registered as a not-for-profit charity in the UK. It exists purely through the generosity of the public together with securing corporate sponsorship and grants.
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The original concept of the late broadcaster, historian and author, Professor Richard Holmes, it took photographer Mike St Maur Sheil eight years to complete the photography for Fields of Battle.
View a short video on the inspiration behind Michael St Maur Sheil's journey capturing the emotional and historical heritage of landscapes which witnessed the monumental events of the
First World War.