The stories of Herne Hill residents who served and lived through WW1 are to be unearthed for the first time, writes Emma Snaith…
The Herne Hill Society’s ‘Remembering Herne Hill 1914-18’ project has been awarded £5,200 from a Heritage Lottery Fund grant to tell the stories of local people.
Amongst the tales to be told are those of the hundreds of men and women who lost their lives in the war as well as non-combatants, including conscientious objectors and people of German heritage.
There is currently no public memorial in Herne Hill to all the Great War’s casualties so the project leaders are keen for volunteers to come forward to help identify the hidden stories of residents.
A minimum of 30 volunteer researchers of all ages will be needed.
Colin Wight, Chair of The Herne Hill Society, said: “We’re sure that there are many fascinating stories to be uncovered.
“We already know, for example, that the residents of Frankfurt Road petitioned to have the name of the street changed in 1914, and that a signatory of the Versailles Peace Treaty, George Nicoll Barnes, lived at 76 Herne Hill.”
The project will be run jointly by the Herne Hill Society and the Charter School in Dulwich.
The school’s involvement will be led by the Head of History Dan Townsend, who already has experience of leading a successful heritage project.
Helen Hayes, Dulwich and West Norwood MP, said: “The need for remembrance is growing with the passing of the generation who lived through the First World War, and there is no more effective way to bring remembrance to life than to help young people to understand and imagine what happened during the war to people living in their own neighbourhood”
The ‘Remembering Herne Hill 1914-18’ project will culminate in a book and an online memorial which everyone will be able to access free of charge.
For further information, please contact Colin Wight at the Herne Hill Society: email firstname.lastname@example.org
See this week’s Southwark News for more historical photos