They went with songs to the battle, they were young.
Straight of limb, true of eyes, steady and aglow.
They were staunch to the end against odds uncounted,
They fell with their faces to the foe.
They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning,
We will remember them.
Eric Curbishley is a local military researcher, who very kindly provided this information about the War Memorial in Poulton.
Eric wrote a successful first book about Poulton War Memorial in 2011 entitled “Poulton-le-Fylde War Memorial and The Men Behind The Names” which covers both World Wars (copies of which are still available).
He then decided to take on a much larger project and research Thornton Cleveleys War Memorial and a few weeks ago published a further book entitled “Thornton Cleveleys War Memorial and The Men Behind The Names” First World War.
Eric is currently working on the second book which will be entitled “Thornton Cleveleys War Memorial and The Men and Women Behind The Names” Second World War (there are three women on this memorial) which he plans to publish towards the end of 2015.
Eric also shares his own personal story of how the war touched his own family, which you can find here.
If you would like to buy a book you can contact Eric on 01253 882474 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Poulton War Memorial
When the First World War started in August 1914 Poulton-le-Fylde was just a small market town with a population of approx. 2,600 residents.
In and around the Poulton-le-Fylde area many of the people were employed in agriculture and others were employed in related jobs such as blacksmiths, grooms and general farm labourers etc. It was from some of these occupations that many of the local young men quickly volunteered for service in the army, no doubt encouraged by the rumour that the war would all be over by Christmas. Those who were already members of the Territorial Army were called up immediately and soon found themselves in France and Belgium.
For other young men, in what seemed rather mundane jobs, volunteering for service in the army with the possible opportunity to travel abroad may have seemed like a big adventure and a good idea at the time. Little did they realise that for some of them the result would be serious injuries, prolonged illness or in the worse case, death.
The King’s Own Royal (Lancaster) Regiment was the local regiment for this area and their staff visited Poulton-le-Fylde and other towns nearby seeking recruits. Of the local men who served in this particular regiment many sadly never returned home to their families and now eighteen of them have their names commemorated on Poulton-le-Fylde War Memorial together with twenty six men from other regiments who also gave their lives for their country.
Poulton-le-Fylde War Memorial was originally erected in Queens Square in 1921. When the one-way traffic system was proposed the memorial was moved on 1st August 1979 to its present location in Market Place.
At the time of the ceasefire on 11th November 1918 few people would have believed that twenty one years later history would repeat itself and Britain and it’s Allies would find themselves at war again, not only against the old enemy Germany, but this time also against the Japanese in the countries of the Far East many thousands of miles away from home.
This was in some ways a different type of war. Ships, aircraft, tanks and weapons were of a much more advanced design than in the last war but the end result was still the same in that people were being killed, both servicemen and women as well as civilians. Conscription had been introduced in 1916 due to the very high casualty rates and at the start of the Second World War it was introduced again. Once again, more many men and women, both volunteers and conscripts from Poulton-le-Fylde, were drafted into all three services and once again some of them never made it back home and are commemorated on memorials or buried in military cemeteries all over the world. By coincidence the names on the Second World War Memorial also total 44, the youngest being just 18 years of age and the oldest 59 years of age.
Take a look at the Events Calendar for details and times of this years Remembrance Sunday Services.
Poulton War Memorial