Last Sunday our Heritage volunteer day was a particularly enjoyable one and not just because of the fabulous tea and cake to celebrate the Queen’s 90th birthday.
Several of our ‘new’ and some ‘not so new’ WW1 research volunteers called in to catch up with their ongoing research into the 205 men recorded on the War Memorial. All the surviving service records have been researched, which gives a fuller picture of the men’s experiences during the Great War. These records provide a range of basic details such as when and where they enlisted, how they were transferred between regiments as the War progressed and units were decimated by the fighting and the cause of their untimely death. They can also be a touching source of family detail and even personal detail such as hair and eye colour.
While the WW1 project is definitely occupying the lion’s share of our time and energy, we are still continuing with the usual grave recording and researching. So, as well as organising the next stage of the WW1 project we were really pleased to welcome two visitors who had travelled all the way from Ohio, USA, to locate a family grave in the Cemetery Park.
Simon and his mother were on holiday in the UK and they had planned a visit to Tower Hamlets Cemetery park to try and locate the grave of a distant relative who died as a small child. Luckily they had the relevant grave number but, despite Simon and four of the Heritage team manfully clambering through, under and around various clumps of early summer undergrowth, we could only locate the near location of the grave. The small public grave headstone is no longer there. Simon was more than satisfied to have come so close to a part of his family heritage.