Diver makes Great War Discovery and reunites family.

Roger Bennett, a police diver from the Yorkshire and Humber Regional Marine Unit, was searching for a murder weapon at the bottom of the River Loxley just to the North of Sheffield. During his dive he found what he first thought was an old coin, but when Mr Bennett resurfaced, realised he had actually found a medal. And with help from Clifton Park Museum in Rotherham determined that the medal belonged to Lance Corporal Stephen Smith the York and Lancaster Regiment. The young soldier fought in Gallipoli in Turkey on 2 July 1915 and died from wounds he received at Suvla bay on 9 August 2015. “I initially thought it was a coin, but as soon as I realised that it was medal I was amazed.  We quickly made the decision to attempt to reunite the medal with Stephen’s family. Our research started within hours of us finding it. We put a couple of photos on social media and the rest is history…” The family of Lance Corporal Smith got in touch after seeing pictures of the newly polished medal on Twitter and Roger added that: “We were thrilled to track down Stephen’s family and it was fantastic to learn more about his story, despite it being such a sad ending. I’m so pleased that we have been able to reunite them with such a precious and important part of their family history” Lance Corporal Smith’s family agreed to donate the medal to the Clifton Park after a genealogical search traced 22 living family members with some living as far away as Canada.Reverend Julian Cliff, who was Lance Corporal Smith’s great nephew, never knew his grandmother had any other family and the 22 family members met for the first time at the museum more than a century after Lance Corporal Smith’s death. Julian told the South Yorkshire Police “At first I thought it was a hoax, but once things started to fall in to place I was so grateful that Roger and the team had decided to find us. They went beyond the call of duty and they have brought a family together - most of us have never met before today.”

2021-03-30T15:01:58+01:0029 January 2019|

1914-1919 Roll of Honour War Memorial

War memorial almost lost forever as wartime researchers struggle to find it a new home.  The Roll of Honour was originally displayed at the Woodlands Lodge, Haworth, No185 (N) of the Grand United Order of Oddfellows Friendly Society for their fallen and served members in the Great War of 1914-1919. The memorial is a rectangular wooden board which has supporting pillars and a cornice. The Coat of Arms is at the top with the names of those who fell listed below it. The inscription reads “1914 Roll of Honour 1919/ Amicita Amor Et Veritas/ Members who have made the/ Supreme sacrifice.” Listed are the names of the 83 who served, 10 of whom sadly died and 73 who returned. The Regiments and Corps named on the Roll of Honour are listed below; - Army Ordinance Corps (AOC) - Army Service Corps (ASC) - Army Service Corps (motor transport) (ASC (mt)) - Coldstream Guards (CG) - Duke of Wellingtons (West Riding Regiment) (D of W (WR)) - Durham Light Infantry (DLI) - East Lancashire Regiment (EL) - East Yorkshire Regiment (EY) - King’s Liverpool Regiment (KL) - Kings Own Yorkshire Light Infantry (KOYLI) - Labour Corps (Lab C) - Machine Gun Corps (MGC) - North Staffordshire Regiment (N. Staff) - Northumberland Fusiliers (NF) - Royal Air Force (RAF) - Royal Engineers (RE) - Royal Engineers Signals (RE Signals) - Royal Field Artillery (RFA) - Royal Garrison Artillery (RGA) - Royal Highlanders (Black Watch) (BW (RH)) - Royal Scot’s Fusiliers (RSF) - Royal Scots (RS) - Royal Warwickshire Regiment (RW) - South Staffordshire Regiment (S. Staff) - The Queen’s (Royal West Surrey Regiment) (SR) - West Yorkshire Regiment (Prince of Wales Own) (WY) - York and Lancaster Regiment (Y&L) - Yorkshire Hussars (YH) Measuring 2.2x2m finding a new home for the war memorial was not an easy task, including its relocation by which it was proudly carried down the main street to its new location as the van was too small. Transferred by The Men of Worth Project C.I.C. into the custodianship of The Wyedean Weaving Co. Ltd, who together with the War Memorials Trust jointly funded its repair and conservation. As suppliers of ceremonial parade wear and accoutrement to the UK Ministry of Defence, Wyedean is a perfect choice, also allowing it to stay in its hometown Haworth. Even though the Roll of Honour’s new location is only a few hundred yards away from its original site, it was Crest Regalia, a long term customer of Wyedean’s based on the Isle of Wight that read Men of Worth’s blog seeking a new home for the memorial and put Wyedean and Men of Worth in touch. Without this intervention the Roll of Honour may well have been lost, along with many other war memorials which cannot be rehoused and end up being discarded, lost, unloved or broken. Several of the family names listed on the Roll of Honour will be recognisable to many in the Keighley and the Worth Valley area. It is a tremendous memorial full of history, [...]

2021-03-30T15:42:56+01:0030 October 2018|
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