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Devon Remembers - World War I 1914 to 1918

Devon Remembers - World War I 1914 to 1918

The Widecombe History Group needs your help. We are researching the lives of those from the Parish of Widecombe who fought in the First World War, as our part in the county-wide project: Devon Remembers. Led by Peter Rennells, John Kimber and David Ashman, the History Group hopes to discover more about the lives of those who went to war; who they were; what Regiment they belonged to; where they lived; where they fought; where they died; the families they left behind and what happened to those that returned. We hope to bring their memories alive again in book form so that they are no longer just names on a plaque or on a scroll (and, in the case of the Forgotten Men below, so that we can ensure that we remember them). Please help us. If you had a relative from Widecombe Parish who fought in the First World War please get in touch. Maybe you only know the regiment they fought in, or you have a story that has been passed down, maybe you even have a photo. Any information would be useful. Let us capture this information before it is lost forever.

There is a commemorative plaque in Widecombe Church of those soldiers that died in the War but the Roll of Honour, commemorating those that served and returned, is missing. We would like to reinstate this Roll of Honour, especially as all the other churches in our area have one.

Help us to preserve the memory for posterity of those who left Widecombe to go to war to fight for us. They went to war so that we are free today.

Please contact us by email: Send us an email

Or phone Peter Rennells on 01 364 621302

We are also compiling short biographies of those who fell in the War. For details of this please see Widecombe - The Fallen

Forgotten Servicemen

Below is a list of the men that we believe fought in the First World War from the Widecombe area that we would like more information on. They are not recorded on any plaque or other commemoration. If you can tell us about any of them, however brief, or if you know of any others, then please let us know.

Believed Died

Leslie WebbRoyal NavyPostbridge
Reginald James Coaker - PrivateCycle BattalionPostbridge
E. Scott-James - LtRoyal Fleet AuxiliaryDury
Gordon White - PrivateMerripit
R.C.A. French - Private 69683231st Battalion, Canadian W.F.Greyhound, Postbridge

Believed Survived

William Bray - Stoker K/28837HMS RamilliesWest Lodge
William BeardRoyal ArtilleryBonehill
Owen King - Stoker K/20946HMS CurlewDunstone Cottage
Henry Lamb - SeamanHMS DevonshireManor Cottage
Richard Palmer - First Writer 347578HMS LiverpoolDunstone House
William Hannaford - Private 2020111st & 4th DevonshireBlackslade
Sydney Hannaford - Private1st DevonsBlackslade
Samuel Hannaford - Private 215449th AustraliansSouthcombe
Henry James Smale - Private 2683R.M.L.IModel Cottages
Edward James Stidson West - Private M/270493R.A.S.CPoundsgate
John Norrish - Gunner 163530217 BTN R.G.A.Cator
William Norrish - Private 2020101st & 4th DevonshireCator
Charles Norrish - Sgt12th Canadian Mounted Rifles AlbertaCator
Harry Opie - Private 378385Labour Corps.Riddon
Irwin WillcocksJordan
William Edmund Pollexfen Bastard - Lt. Col.Royal EngineersBuckland Court
Sydney Oswald FrenchPostbridge
George FordRoyal MarinesThe Bungalow Widecombe
Robert HitchcockRoyal NavyVenton
William MinersRoyal NavyDunstone
Samuel MinersDunstone
Kitson - CaptainHedge Barton
Clifford PalmerMerchant NavyDunstone
Jones - CommanderWindwhistle
Hordern - CaptainJordan
James CourtierRoyal MarinesDunstone
Walter MorleyRoyal NavyWest Lodge
George HillASCHedge Barton

Details Not Known

Tom NosworthyNot KnownDunstone
Andrew HarveyNot KnownPost Office

For more information on the Devon-wide project please visit Devon Remembers

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