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97 years ago today the guns of the First World War finally fell silent, ending 4 years, 3 months and two weeks of brutal conflict which would see over 8 million soldiers from the UK lose their lives. Shaftesbury, like all communities of Britain, was not spared from this great loss and as we rapidly approach the centenary in 2018 we are renewing our call to the community to come forward with information on Shaftesbury's history, particularly in relation to WW1.
So far we have a list of the fallen from the Park War memorial, along with a few basic details such as rank and regiment. However still missing is the story of who these brave men actually were, what they looked like and who was left behind. Several requests have been made to this site for more information on relatives along with people trying to trace descendants.
A prime example of this are the grandchildren of Henry John Toogood, who thankfully survived the war, are looking for information on Henry's uncle, Arthur Thomas Toogood, who died on 12th June 1915 and is commemorated on the Park Walk monument. While they have a lot of information about Henry, they would love to know more about Arthur's life and descendants. Perhaps some are still here in Shaftesbury, with it being such a common local name, and one of them may have a photograph of their Great-Great-Uncle. If you think you might know, why not have a look at Henry & Arthur's pages on this site and get in touch.
We would love to build an archive of local history on this site, with personal stories of family members, so if you have photos & information please do send them to firstname.lastname@example.org and someone will ensure it goes online for all to see. It does not have to be someone who died in WW1, it could be about anyone who lived in our community so please get in touch.