WORLD War I historian Steve Williams, of Brindle, who is also secretary and co-founder of the Chorley Pals Memorial Appeal, is organising a coach trip to the Somme battlefield.

The five-day trip, in July, in aid of the appeal, is aiming to raise £55,000 for a bronze statue to be erected in the town to the men from Chorley who fought as Y Company of the famous Accrington Pals' battalion.

It will visit many of the main sites on the Somme battlefield in northern France, including the Accrington Pals' trenches facing the village of Serre.

In the old front line trench can be found the only memorial to the Chorley men, a plaque, erected in 1998, where they went over the top on the morning of July 1, 1916 - the first day of the Battle of the Somme.

Close-by is the Accrington Pals memorial made, appropriately, from Accrington brick.

This will be the fourth coach trip that Steve has organised to the battlefields on The Western Front, and it will leave on Thursday, July 10.

There will be three days touring the Somme battlefield, including a visit to the Thiepval Memorial to the Missing, and a wreath will also be laid at the Chorley Pals plaque.

Chorley MP and co-founder of the appeal, Lindsay Hoyle, commented: "This is one way of remembering the sacrifice of the men from the town who fought in the First World War."

l Details and a booking form are available by calling 01254 854298, or e-mailing

Full details about the Chorley Pals Memorial, a registered charity, can be found on its website.