Share your memories of war heroes for West Haddon research group

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A group of villagers in West Haddon are searching for information about the men who are named on the 1914-18 Roll of Honour that hangs in All Saint’s Church.

They don’t just want to hear about people who died, but those who joined up and later came back to civilian life, homes and families.

Members of the 100 Heroes Research Group are collecting stories to put together in a book to be published on Armistice Day 2018.

Group member Wendy Raybould, said: “Do you remember any stories told by your elderly relatives about those war years? Not just military experiences but tales of village life during that time, and the consequences later – like Bert Baxter, the sexton, whose job it was to ring the curfew bell every evening.

“He had been gassed during the war and was sometimes too ill to do it. But the young lad who was called upon to stand in for him remembered the situation many decades later.”

He thought there was a ghost in every corner of the church.

Wendy added: “Members of the Furniss family, now living in Norfolk, have kindly sent us copies of some wonderful old family photos of the Furniss tailor’s shop at the top of West End, along with daughter Charlotte’s wedding (when her brother Arthur played the organ) and her brothers in uniform.

“Another photo of the village bowls club in the 1930s, shows a number of the survivors, identified by later villagers, so we can put some faces to names.”

People are invited to share recollections over tea and cake at West Haddon Village Hall on Sunday, April 17, 2.30pm - 5.30pm. For further information contact Wendy Raybould on (01788) 510627 or wjraybould@gmail.com, visit www.100heroes.org or Facebook group, A Hundred Heroes.