Time to tell stories of Redditch war dead

By Ian Dipple Friday 23 November 2012 Updated: 23/11 10:46

A PROJECT is underway to uncover the lives of the area's war dead and an appeal is being made to Standard readers for their help.

The aim is to uncover as much information about the 300 plus men listed on the war memorial outside St Stephen's Church in the town centre as well as others around the borough and if possible surrounding villages.

As well as uncovering basic facts about their military lives and the location of their death, it is also hoped to dig deeper into their background and find out where they lived, who their parents were and what they did for a living before being called up to fight in the First and Second World Wars.

The project is being co-ordinated by Standard editor Ian Dipple and Philip Jarvis from the Redditch History and Heritage Group with the aim of using the information uncovered to form part of Redditch's commemorations of the 100th anniversary of the start of The Great War in 1914.

Initial ideas include incorporating the information gained in to 2014 Remembrance services along with an exhibition. A book and possibly a website to document the information is also being considered so future generations will not forget the sacrifice made by their predecessors.

The project has been inspired by a challenge issued during this year's Remembrance Day service by the Rev Steve Levett, from the Methodist Church of Emmanuel in the Ecumenical Centre, to not allow the men on the memorial to fade into history and become just names.

Kingsley College has agreed to get involved with the project as students were already carrying out their own research.

But with so many names to look into, an appeal is being made for people interested in helping with the research to volunteer their time or who has a relative on the memorial and can shed some light on their background or photographs.

Anyone wanting to get involved or with any information should email philipjarvis1@btinternet.com or call him on 01527 544068.

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