When Ron Dawson first had the idea for a song based around the phrase “lest we forget”, he could never have imagined the project it would turn into.

Ron, 74, is now the driving force behind a First World War memorial concert at the BIC next month, featuring a 400-strong children’s choir and 200 musicians.

“I’ve always had an interest in music,” said Ron, who lives in Winterbourne Stickland, near Blandford.

“I’m a member of the British Legion. One morning I was looking at the British Legion and I saw “Lest we forget”. I thought ‘someone ought to write a song about lest we forget’.

“Twenty minutes later I had written a tune in my head.”

Ron, who is working with Bournemouth and Poole’s Music Education Hub SoundStorm and Dorset Music to stage the concert, plucked up the courage to sing the song to a friend who is principal trombonist with the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, who then wrote up the music for the tune.

He then began spreading the word about Lest We Forget.

“What happened then was the Canadian premiere was at a primary school, and they sent me a recording of their kids singing it,” he said.

“I realised, hearing these children singing it, Lest We Forget, remembrance – that the kids are the ones that should be singing it.

“I thought with the World War One commemorations, there ought to be a children’s concert.”

The concert, on March 19, will feature a choir made up of more than 400 schoolchildren from across Dorset, 200 musicians, a display of flags from 42 of the nation states involved in the war and the falling poppy images which were displayed on the Houses of Parliament on Remembrance Day last year.

It has already attracted the attention of the Department for Media, Culture & Sport which has agreed the use of a set of flags from the cenotaph in Whitehall.

“It’s going to be fantastic,” said Ron.

“There are going to be two maypoles and we’ve got access to a video of kids in the First World War doing maypole dancing. On the big screen we are going to wind back from today, going through the years with a radio broadcast so you end up with a really crackly radio broadcast from 1914.”

Ron is now working to try to secure sponsorship and funding to cover the cost of staging the concert. He is seeking local businesses who can sponsor the T-shirts the children are hoping to wear, or the programmes.

“The concert is not only performed by, but intended for children. We want to get them understanding what World War One was about and to carry the memory forward,” he said.

  •  If you can help sponsor the concert, email michael.armstrong@ bournemouth.gov.uk. The concert is on March 19 and tickets are available from bic.co.uk or 0844 576 3000, from £10