Ernest Cooke Veteran
We have to announce sadly that another of our veterans Ernest Cooke aged 93 has passed away.(May 2012) Ernest lived in Accrington but was part of the Clitheroe Royal Artillery during World War Two. Ernest came to a number of our functions.
Sawley War Memorial
We have been in communication with the Sawley, Gisburn and Bolton by Bowland Parish Council regarding the very poor condition of the memorial at Sawley and had a very disappointing reply. The names are very difficult to read and given another year or so these will not be visible. The Parish Council have replied - no community interest and will keep this under review. Very poor to say the least. Gisburn and Bolton by Bowland have well kept memorials and the same Parish Council is as far as we know are under the same parish Council. We wrote to the local paper to highlight this problem and to see if any residents are actually interested in restoring this memorial for those men whose names are listed here. We received several phone calls of support and stating that they had asked for the Parish Council support and had not been supported. We have now contacted the Ribble Valley Borough Council for their support.
We are delighted to state that since our communications the Memorial was cleaned and just sorry that it took our involvement for this to happen. Credit must go to those who did this work.
Fred Green Veteran
Fred Green Passed away January 2012 and was cremated at Pleasington, Blackburn. The Chairman of Clitheroe Youth Forum attended to pay his respects on behalf of the group. Fred lived in Whalley for most of his life and served in the RAF as a leading Aircraft-man and spent most of the war in Canada servicing the planes for pilots learning to fly. At the end of the war with Germany Fred was transferred back to the UK and was assigned to the Navy on an Aircraft Carrier preparing to invade Japan. Thankfullly the invasion never took place with Japan surrendering. Fred worked for many years as a nurse at Calderstones and was instrumental in ensuring a military parade with representatives from the Royal British Legion, Local Authority and various organisations for those men who died in World ar One and World War Two who are buried at the Commonwealth War Graves Cemetery across from the hospital in Whalley.
Bill Wolsenholme (Passing Away)
Sadly we have to announce that that we have lost Bill Wolsenholme one of our veterans who has passed away. Bill served in Malta for the majority of the war with the RAF servicing the planes. Bill turned up to all our functions and ceremonies and will be greatly missed. We hope to be able to be present at his funeral along with representatives from the Royal British Legion.
Sainsbury -Bag Packing 11th December 2011
Our thanks got to the Sainsbury Store in Clitheroe as we were given permission to hold a bag packing session on Sunday 11th December. This took place between 12noon and 4pm. Money raised will go towards helping with our next World War Two project and to keep our websites up for at least another year which is very much needed to do these projects. Our thanks go to all those who very kindly put some money into the boxes and all credit to those youth members who turned up and worked very hard indeed. The money has still to be counted but at a rough estimate £400 was raised.
Sam Brearley Clitheroe Advertiser 24th November 2011
Delighted to state that Sam Brearley appeared in the Clitheroe Advertiser dated 24th November on page 17. Sam was presented with his long awaited Greek campaign medal several weeks ago at the Civic Chambers in Clitheroe by the Deputy Lord Lieutenant Dennis Mondoros. Sam will be 99 on the 23rd December. Sam was in the Royal Army Service Corps, 1st Armoured Brigade 2nd Division as a corporal and signed up in 1940 aged 27. Sam was rejected at his first few attempts to enlist for being too small but finally made it. He and his division landed in Piraeus, Greece in March 1941, then fought the Germans in Edessa, Yogoslavia before having to retreat. Again after many battles with the German Army the Allied forces surrendered and Sam was rounded up in Kalamata, Greece, on the 28th April, 1941 with thousands of other servicemen. From here he was taken to a camp in Corinth with another 7,000 men who endured terrible conditions. Little food and disease was rampant. From here they were moved on in cattle trucks and having to walk over 300 miles to Germany. Sam was to remain in various 'Stalag' Prisoner of War camps for the remainder of the war. In one camp in Spittal, Austria he was forced to dig graves for hundreds of Russian soldiers. His major role in the various camps having been involved with RADA prior to the war was to stage theatrical productions for the hundeds of men in those camps. These ranged from the 'The Mikado, The Gondoliers and The Yeoman of The Guard' to mention but a few. They built their own theatre from an old barn. Sam states that even the Germans came to watch and enjoyed the performances.
In May 1945 Sam was liberated by the Americans at his camp in Hohenfels. Well done Sam and we were pleased to help you get this medal and all the others.