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Website traces soldiers
WILTSHIRE military historian Richard Broadhead has built a website that traces almost every soldier with Wiltshire connections who was killed in the First World War and allows relatives or anyone who is interested in that period to find where these soldiers are buried or where they are commemorated on a memorial.
Born in Chippenham, Mr Broadhead, right, is a former soldier in the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers who was invalided out after a road accident and became interested in the First World War about 12 years ago after attending a memorial service.
“As I listened to the names being read out with just an initial, no forename, I looked around and realised that people had no idea who these men were,” he said.
“I thought that the best way to remember these men was to tell a story about them, so I researched all the guys from Salisbury and tried to find out as much as I could about them.”
He published the results in his 2007 work Salisbury Soldiers, which was followed by further volumes for Devizes, Chippenham, Trowbridge and Calne.
Mr Broadhead also works with a group called Finding the Forgotten, which traces soldiers who have died but have not been commemorated on war memorials or had a regimental headstone erected.
And he has been working with local schools to prepare information booklets to accompany them when they go on battlefield tours.
His website, with details of about 12,000 soldiers connected to Wiltshire, can be found at wiltshiresoldiers.co.uk.
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