Thame Remembers, the project challenging the people of Thame to deliver commemorative crosses to the graves and memorials of all the local men who have lost their lives in conflict (wherever they may be in the world) was launched at a special ceremony last Sunday, the eve of the outbreak of WW1.
Following a very moving commemorative service at St Mary’s Church local dignitaries, including direct family members of two of the casualties, laid Thame Remembers crosses at the 12 graves and 19 memorial stones in the churchyard.
Mike Dyer, Project Co-ordinator for Thame Remembers, commented that ‘It was a very poignant and dignified event and a most respectful way in which to launch this ambitious project’.
190 men from Thame have died in conflicts in the last 120 years, in places as far afield as Egypt, Iraq, India, New Zealand and Tanzania, plus those who died at sea.
The project now invites their family members, or anyone with a direct connection to Thame, to take part in visiting each and every one of their graves or memorials and laying a Thame Remembers cross as a token from the community.
To find out more about the project, including a list of casualties and how to get involved in the challenge, visit the project web site at www.thameremembers.org.
Notes to editors:
– An article on the event by local reporter Sonja Francis is published here and may be used in whole or in part but please credit www.Thame.Net
– Images from the event are posted in a Thame Remembers gallery hosted by http://www.nickwhitephotography.com/galleries.html Please contact Mike Dyer below for the password. Click on each image to enlarge and to reveal the picture caption and credit underneath. All necessary releases and permissions have been obtained.
– We also attach some ‘Extra Bites’, a few further insights relating to some of the war graves in St Mary’s churchyard, Thame.
Mrs Rosalie Gibson, a Thame resident, laid a cross at the grave of her uncle Albert Horace ‘Tiger’ Quainton of the Oxford & Bucks Light Infantry. Tiger was born in Moreton and went to school in Thame, joined up at age of 17, and landed in France shortly after D Day. On 23 July 1944 he was wounded while driving a jeep which became pinned down under mortar fire at a cross roads just outside Caen. Repatriated to the UK, he died of his wounds three months later at St Martin’s Hospital in Bath.
Mr Peter Beard, also a Thame resident, laid a cross at the grave of his brother, Flying Officer Anthony Austin Beard of the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. Tony received his wings from Commander Guy Gibson of Dambusters fame and became a flying instructor at Little Rissington in Gloucestershire, but suffered a fatal flying accident in bad weather on September 24, 1944.
Private Charles Boiling, Oxford & Bucks Light Infantry, was known to be buried in St Mary’s Churchyard in Thame but there was no headstone to the grave. When Thame Remembers sought to place a small marker, local funeral directors Surman & Horwood offered to place a full headstone in his memory and this was installed in time for the launch event.
Private William Honour, of the Army Service Corps, made it back to Thame but died of his wounds in Thame Cottage Hospital on Thursday 13 April 1916, aged 42.
For further details, please contact:
David Bretherton – Project Leader and Treasurer
Tel 01844 215178
Mike Dyer – Project Co-ordinator and Budget Holder
Tel 07973 440229
Ian Jones – Steering Group member
Tel 01844 213947; 07929 377893
Patsy Baker – Steering Group member
Tel 01844 217332