The battle was South Africa's biggest loss in World War 1. It was also the first major engagement entered into by the SA 1st Infantry Brigade on the Western Front. Of the 121 officers and 2 032 soldiers, only 750 soldiers survived the battle. During the 2006 ceremony, a new South African coat of arms was unveiled at the South African memorial on the site. The names of black members of the South African Labour Corps who died at Arques-la-Bataille and those who perished on board the SAS Mendi in the English Channel were also unveiled.
Local musician Penelope Jane Dunlop – also known as PJ Powers or "Thandeka" – was born in Durban on this day in 1963.
Her first musical group was an all-girl band called Pantha before becoming the lead singer for the rock band Hotline, which was formed in Johannesburg in 1980. The band changed their style to Afro-rock in 1983. Their biggest hit was "Jabulani", which was written by Hotline's bass guitarist, George van Dyk. The group disbanded in 1987, after which Powers pursued a solo career. In 1988, she was banned from radio and television for a year by the apartheid government for her performance at a charity concert for war orphans in Zimbabwe. She was encouraged to continue her singing by Nelson Mandela, who wrote to her from Victor Verster Prison in Cape Town. In 1995, her recording of the Rugby World Cup official song featuring Ladysmith Black Mambazo, "World in Union", reached no. 47 on the UK Singles Chart. She performed the song live at the opening of the 1995 Rugby World Cup in Cape Town for a worldwide television audience. In the 1990s, her music took on a more Afro-pop focus, finding a receptive audience in the black market, who gave her the nickname, "Thandeka" (the loved one). Powers has shared the stage with Eric Clapton, Joan Armatrading, Hugh Masekela, Divine Divas, Lord Richard Attenborough and Sibongile Khumalo. She also wrote an 85th birthday song for Mandela, which she sang for him and guests including Bill Clinton and Oprah Winfrey at his party in 2003. Her latest album, "Destiny" was released at the end of 2013. Her biography, "Here I Am", as told to Marianne Thamm, was released by Penguin books in August 2014.