COMMUNITIES are being invited to illuminate their homes with a single light to commemorate the centenary of the First World War.

At 11pm on 4 August 1914 Britain declared war on Germany, ushering in one of the darkest periods in our history, with the British Foreign Secretary Sir Edward Grey saying: “The lamps are going out all over Europe; we shall not see them lit again in our life-time."

LIGHTS OUT is an invitation to everyone to turn off their lights from 10pm to 11pm on August 4, except for a single light for a shared moment of reflection.

Castle Howard will be helping to remember Ryedale’s part by illuminating the gilt lantern of its iconic dome with a single light.

Simon Howard said: “The impact of war was greatly felt by many who lived on the Castle Howard Estate and our involvement with the LIGHTS OUT initiative is a fitting way to remember those who lost their lives and the communities that were affected.”

Cllr Luke Ives, Ryedale district council chairman, said: “World War One was a horrific event on an unimaginable scale. Three quarters of a million men died fighting, and many more were wounded. It is important that we never forget their sacrifices; LIGHTS OUT is a respectable and appropriate way to commemorate outbreak of war, and I hope Ryedale residents add their support to this event."

Charles Byrne, director of fundraising at the Royal British Legion, added: "Our vision is that over one million candles will be lit across the UK, commemorating every service man and woman who died during WW1.

"We hope to see candles lit at every war memorial, community centre and home in every village and in every community."