Can you help identify these Norfolk Second World War heroes?
- Credit: Archant Library
Have you ever looked at names on Norfolk war memorials and wondered who the people were and how they lost their lives fighting for our freedom?
It is important these names are not lost in the mist of time. We have a duty to remember them.
In Thorpe St Andrew they are doing just that… and they are appealing for your help.
I have been talking to Dale Wiseman who is reaching out for information about the 50 people named on the Second World War Memorial on River Green erected following fund-raising under the chairmanship of Mrs E Davidson, wife of Dr Davidson.
In 1949 the British Legion took over the maintenance of the memorial from Thorpe Ex-Service Men’s Association.
“We are appealing for anyone with information about the people on the memorial to come forward,” said Dale.
They are planning to organise a poppy walk and a book later in the year so this is a great opportunity for people to step forward so we all know more about these people.
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“Some of the fallen were born in Thorpe such as Cyril Caston and Peter Waller who we have been told were school friends who shared an interest in model aircraft,” said Dale.
“Both joined the RAF as pilots. Peter was two years older than Cyril. He disappeared in 1943 and Cyril in 1944, both flying Lancaster bombers,” he added.
Another four airman, Leslie Hadder, Derek Bryant, Gordon Ridley and Donald Smith at buried at Thorpe, Leslie was part of an aircrew shot down on their return to Oulton in Norfolk.
“We also have nine men from the Norfolk Regiment on the memorial. Eight were involved in the conflict in the Far East. Some were PoW’s including William Artis and Arthur Wilson who worked on the infamous Burma railway,” said Dale.
So many men from Norfolk lost their lives in the Japanese slave camps.
Do you know any of the people named on the war memorial? If you do please contact firstname.lastname@example.org