Poppy Appeal organiser from Winslow, Mark Randall, has written a book remembering the lives of the 51 soldiers from the town who were killed in the First World War or as a result of its consequences.
Mark has been volunteering for the Poppy Appeal for six years and was inspired to write the book, titled 'Winslow Fallen in the Great War', in 2014 during the centenary of the start of the war. Following four years spent researching the stories of the soldiers who died, he is now ready to present their stories.
“I felt we should do something to understand who are behind the names on the war memorial and what suffering they went through.”
The author, who was in the army reserves for 15 years in Aylesbury from 1984 to 1999, was clearly deeply moved by many of stories he uncovered while writing his book.
One in particular stands out for the impact it must have had on the family involved and the tragic coincidence that forms part of the heartbreaking tale.
George and Mary Warner, from Shipton in Winslow, lost their two sons in the war. Private Walter Warner was killed just six weeks after arriving in France, on 25 September 1914, at the battle of Aisne.
It is almost beyond comprehension that his brother, Private George Warner, was killed at Loos exactly one year later on 25 September, 1915.
One thousand copies have currently been printed of the book and it is priced at a recommended donation of £5. All funds raised from the sale of the book go to the Poppy Appeal charity.
The book is available for purchase from the following locations, and will also be on sale at the Farmer's Market on 4 November:
The Bell Hotel, The Nags Head, The Royal British Legion, Winslow Football Club, Scott’s Trading, The Farmer Deli, The butchers, Cutting Corner, Wilkinson’s, The Poppy stall at Tesco’s Buckingham.