North Wiltshire MP visits graves of Wiltshire men who died in world wars

This Is Wiltshire: North Wiltshire MP James Gray North Wiltshire MP James Gray

As part of the First World War One commemorations, North Wiltshire MP James Gray visited three graveyards to see some of the war graves of Wiltshire residents who fell in the First and Second World Wars.

Mr Gray met Andy Knowlson of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission to learn more about further plans for the area and the planned upkeep of the sites.

Mr Gray visited the Commonwealth war graves at sites in Malmesbury, Stanton St. Quintin and Corston. The latter cemetery remembers a single soldier, Gunner William Ponting, who was killed in 1917 at the age of 34.

The site in Stanton St Quintin remembers several men who were killed in training accidents in this country, the youngest of whom, Leading Aircraftman Wilfred Dudley Shaw, was just 20 at the time.

As war casualties they are being remembered by head stones that show the Commonwealth insignia.

Mr Gray said: “There are 209 Commonwealth war graves in North Wiltshire and the Commonwealth War Graves Commission is inviting everyone to visit their local cemeteries and see the graves, particularly in this memorial year.

“I intend to write to all the schools in the vicinity of the war graves cemeteries to organise visits in the next three or four months as part of the World War One commemorations.

"We must do our best to make sure that these soldiers are remembered by generations to come, and these small village cemeteries are a telling reminder of the local people who laid down their lives for their country.”

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