This is the story of the 30,490 men that left Dundee to fight in the First World War and of the people left at home.
International Conscientious Objectors Day
Today, 15th May, is International Conscientious Objectors Day, initiated by the International Conscientious Objectors’ Meeting (ICOM). The ICOM was an annual meeting of COs and their supporters held throughout the world to exchange ideas and offer solidarity. In 1985, at a time when compulsory conscription was still commonplace, it decided to use 15 May, to develop a sharper focus for action on conscientious objection.
The Conscientious Objectors Stone in Tavistock Square, London was unveiled on May 15 1994 by Sir Michael Tippett, Peace Pledge Union President and a one time conscientious objector.
Dundee ‘was fair hotchin’ wi conchies’
Dundee’s contribution to the war effort was widely recognised but it was also a leading centre for the anti-war movement. At the time an anti-war newspaper – Forward, noted that Dundee ‘was fair hotchin’ wi conchies’ (conscientious objectors, those that refused conscription).
Marking Conscientious Objectors Awareness Week in Dundee
The Great War Dundee Partnership is also hosting a number of events on the 18th and 19th May to raise awareness of Conscientious Objectors. Tickets are still available. Find our more here …