Historian Clive Richardson to record the loves and lives of the 40 Ludlow hereos (From Ludlow Advertiser)
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Historian Clive Richardson to record the loves and lives of the 40 Ludlow hereos
Historian Clive Richardson is on a mission to record the lives of the 40 men from Ludlow and the surrounding area who lost their lives in the 1939 to 1945 war.
AS the poppy appeal gets into full swing, and exactly 69 years after one of the last Ludlow servicemen to die in the Second World War was killed, a desperate race against time is on.
Historian Clive Richardson is on a mission to record the loves and lives of the 40 men from Ludlow and the surrounding area who lost their lives in the 1939 to 1945 war.
One of these was Jack French who was killed as he fought his way with the allies into Europe after the Normandy landings.
Jack died 69 years ago this week on October 23, in 1944, aged 33 and he is buried in a military cemetery in Holland.
“We know that Jack was a quartermaster and had a family and brothers in Ludlow and we have some photographs,”
said Mr Richardson, aged 57, a member of the Ludlow Historical Research Group. Mr Richardson has given himself another two years to complete the project that he hopes to have finished by the 70th anniversary of VE Day in 2015.
“Time is running out to tell the stories of these men,” said Mr Richardson.
“I want to be able to remember them with stories and photographs of their real lives so that they are not just names on a war memorial.”
If Jack French was one of the last Ludlow servicemen to be killed in the Second World War, Harry Creswell was the first losing his life in 1940 after being involved in the retreat from Dunkirk.
“There were fewer than half the number of Ludlow men killed in the Second World War than in the First, which claimed 138 local lives,” said Mr Richardson.
“I intend to write more about each of the 40 men whose names appear on the war memorial.
“As the Second World War happened 21 years more recently than the First I am hoping that Ludlow people will be able to help provide stories of the lives of the fallen before the war, of their experiences in uniform before they were killed and, if I am lucky, photographs. Men from the town were killed in most of the major theatres of the war including Italy, Normandy, north Africa and Singapore.
“There was a submariner, a merchant seaman, at least two Royal Navy men who were sunk, several airmen and many soldiers.”
Poyners in Broad Street is helping to collect information and anyone with any is asked to call in to the shop or contact Clive on 01584 879348 or email him firstname.lastname@example.org om THE Ludlow poppy appeal is launched on Saturday.
Boxes and collection tins will be collected from the Royal British Legion headquarters in Mill Street tomorrow. Jim Smithers, mayor of Ludlow, will take part in a launch ceremony in Events Square on Saturday.
Remembrance Sunday is on Sunday November 10 with a laying of wreaths at the War Memorial and a service at St Laurence's Church.
Paul Draper who is organising the appeal would like to hear from anyone willing to help. He can be contacted by calling 07977 270895.