NUJ wreaths laid at the Cenotaph
The NUJ wreaths flank the Merchant Navy’s white anchor. - © Private
11 November 2014
George Macintyre, Newcastle branch chairman, and treasurer David Baines continued the union’s 13-year attendance at the Remembrance Day parade at the Cenotaph.
In addition to the wreath for the 306 British, Irish and Commonwealth men and boys executed for battlefield offences in the First World War, the branch has, over the past few years, also laid a wreath for all journalists killed covering wars and conflicts.
The wreaths are always in the NUJ colours of green, white and gold.
George Macintyre, former NUJ president and Member of Honour said:
"The NUJ has been represented at the Cenotaph every year since the 2001 ADM at Scarborough adopted Newcastle's motion to support the campaign to win pardons for those men and boys shot at dawn and who were often condemned without legal help.
"Every year our wreaths – which have been laid by a range of former presidents including Rory MacLeod, Michelle Stanistreet and Jim Corrigall – have been placed in a prominent position on the Cenotaph and this year is no exception, with our two wreaths flanking the Merchant Navy's white anchor.
"In addition to the wreath for all the executed men, the NUJ has worked with the Shot at Dawn (Ireland) Campaign and, when no one from Ireland has been able to attend the parade, laid a wreath for the 26 Irish men and boys shot at dawn."
Pardons were granted in 2006.
Next week, for the first time since 2004, there will be an official wreath laying at the Irish War Memorial Gardens in Islandbridge, Dublin. George Macintyre will recite Ode to the Fallen and place a wreath on behalf of the NUJ Shot at Dawn Pardons campaign at the altar stone in memory of all those executed for alleged battlefield offences in the 1914-1918 war.
Peter Mulvany, Shot at Dawn (Ireland) co-ordinator said:
"It was the NUJ and their members who continually spoke up for those who lie in peaceful silence on the various battlefields of World War One, and it was their constructive analysis that contributed to the successful conclusion of the Shot at Dawn campaigns in 2006.
"We thank you, the journalists and members of the National Union of Journalists of Great Britain and Ireland, most sincerely for your support. It is fitting that a member of the NUJ Pardons Campaign should place a wreath in this anniversary year at the Irish War Memorial dedicated to those who were executed for military offences during World War One; 26 of whom were from the island of Ireland."