The First World War affected hundreds of millions of people around the world. Within the United Kingdom, hardly a single community was left untouched by the loss of a family member or friend as the total number.
By the end of the war, the total number of casualties in the UK alone ran into millions. Throughout the length and breadth of the land, memorials were erected to the memory of those who had fallen. In the middle of busy city centres, at the village crossroads, in schools, offices, factories and churches, the names being sculpted or etched were but a token of the grief which they represented.
At the time, those names were meaningful symbols of loss. The Second World War was to add more names, perhaps fewer in number, but a stark reminder of the effect of war on the community.
Although they are still remembered on at least an annual basis, the number of those left who personally knew those who were lost is steadily diminishing. Only their names remain; few able to recount the tale of their tragically short lives.
In the Viewforth area of Edinburgh, bounded by Fountainbridge and Bruntsfield, the three main churches proudly displayed their War Memorials bearing the names of the fallen. However, apart from their immediate families, very few of us know anything of the individuals themselves: where they lived, which school they attended, where they worked, what they looked like. In the 1980’s a member of one of those churches, and who lived in the centre of the community, started researching the name on those three memorials. This site records the results of that work.
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