Cadets pay tribute to Guernsey’s fallen

Sea Cadets in Guernsey are taking part in a ‘living’ tribute to those who died during World War One.

Members of TS Sarnia have posed for photographs in the style of those taken during the Great War.

Aaron Yeandle, artist-in-residence at Elizabeth College, a boys’ school in St Peter Port in Guernsey, has spent most of 2018 photographing members of the college’s Combined Cadet Force, as well as cadets from the Guernsey Detachment Army Cadet Force, Guernsey RAF Cadets, and Guernsey Sea and Royal Marines Cadets and all of the photographs form part of an exhibition which opens on Friday.

“I have produced a poignant and thoughtful photographic body of work to commemorate the sacrifice of the Guernsey inhabitants and the Old Elizabethans who took part and for those who died,” said Aaron.

The exhibition, called Memorialise, is open each day from 7pm-9pm from Friday November 9 until Sunday November 25.

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“During the research for this body of work, I was inspired by the military portraiture of the Great War period.

“Photographers of this period used painted Renaissance style backdrops. Or a scenic backdrop, which would relate to where in the world a particular soldier would originate.

“Throughout the year I photographed the Guernsey Cadets, in a contemporary version of the military portraiture of the Great War, which was extremely prevalent at this time.

“The portraits show the modern military uniforms, yet in the photographs there are signs, harking back to the First World War and the military art history of the past.”

Officer in Charge of TS Sarnia, Sub Lieutenant (SCC) Philip Nicol-Gent, added: “TS Sarnia was very pleased to be able to participate in this project, both to commemorate the island’s loss and connect today’s cadets with the centenary of Armistice.”

Islanders formed the Royal Guernsey Light Infantry in 1916 and after a period of training, were sent to the frontline near Ypres and in November 1917 went into action at the Battle of Cambrai.

By December 3, the 1,200 officers and men of the RGLI had been reduced to just 501. Further action at Passchendaele the following month saw that number reduced to 55 men and two officers.

The exhibition, called Memorialise, is open each day from 7pm-9pm from Friday November 9 until Sunday November 25.