DORSET County Council has vowed to support communities looking to hold events to mark the centenary of the First World War.

Members of the council’s cabinet considered a report setting out plans to mark the 100-year anniversary of the Great War, which lasted from 1914 to 1919, in the county.

The Tank Museum at Bovington will be holding an exhibition to mark 100 years of tanks in battle and the Dorset History Centre will be displaying original documents throughout the five years while schools, libraries and church services will also play a role in remembering those who fought for their country in the conflict.

The county council will also be planting thousands of red and white poppies on the bank facing the Roman Town House to the rear of its County Hall headquarters in Dorchester.

Council leader Spencer Flower said: “We are all aware that we are not celebrating, we are commemorating the history of this centenary and the conflicts we have been involved in.”

Cllr Flower stressed that the council’s main role would not be to organise events itself but to enable communities and groups to commemorate in their own way. A dedicated page on the council’s Dorset For You website will be set up and it will also be able to signpost people to funding from bodies such as the Heritage Lottery Fund.

Armed forces member champion Cllr David Walsh said that the military had been working hard for around two years to plan commemorative events. Council chairman John Wilson said he was organising a service at Sherborne Abbey on July 27.