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Who holds key to Garstang war hero?

Historian Paul G Smith from Winmarleigh is appealing for help in learning more about the soldier known as 'Garstang lad'

Historian Paul G Smith from Winmarleigh is appealing for help in learning more about the soldier known as 'Garstang lad'

An historian working on a book on Garstang’s World War One war dead is puzzled after learning about a soldier with apparent local links who served in the conflict.

Nineteen names are recorded on the Great War plaque on Garstang’s war memorial, Park Hill Road, though it is known that others with connections to the town died have their names on memorials in nearby villages.

The mystery began when Bonds postcard collector Chris Oldroyd obtained a postcard bearing a picture of a soldier with the words “Garstang lad.”

He showed it to historian Paul G Smith who is working on a book “Garstang’s Great War heroes” due to be published later this year.

The picture shows the young soldier seated in a classic wartime studio pose. The reverse of the card simply states “Garstang Lad” and below that, the word (possibly the soldier’s surname) POUND, and the year 1917.

Paul said: I have been unable to shed any light on the young man. His features did not seem familiar. Moreover, Pound, if it was his surname, was not local to our area. His cap badge, however, revealed he was serving in the Loyal North Lancashire Regiment, based at Fulwood Barracks.”

Any reader who can throw any local light on the photo of the soldier should contact Winmarleigh-based Paul on 01524 793549.

Paul’s book is due to be published this autumn. The book project is being backed by Garstang Historical Society, whose aim is to provide all pupils at schools in Garstang and Bonds with a free copy. A lecture on the topic of “Garstang’s Great War heroes” is to be held on August 4, the exact 100th anniversary of Britain declaring war on Germany. It will be held at Garstang Arts Centre at 7.30pm.

* More details about Paul’s research, the lecture and the book project, will appear in The Courier next month.

 

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