WITH men going off to fight and with so many never returning, the part that Craven played in the Great War can never be in doubt; neither can the devastation the conflict caused to the social fabric of towns and villages across the Yorkshire Dales.
'Craven's Part in the Great War' website: Based on the book
published in 1919
The sacrifices of those fallen servicemen, and of Craven as a whole, during the dark days of the First World War are now to be immortalised on a free website using a rare book entitled 'Craven's Part in the Great War'.
Published in 1919 by the Craven Herald, the book lists all the men and women who came from Craven and died in the conflict between 1914 and 1918.
The project as been made possible thanks to an award from the Heritage Lottery Fund and the Nationwide Building Society made through the Local Heritage Initiative Scheme, which enables people to explore, investigate and record their local heritage.
Members of the Craven Community Projects Group have been awarded £24,688 to gather and update all existing data and it will take volunteers nearly a year to develop and complete the project.
The website, which is due to go live in November, will have a page with a photograph of each person and any new details will be incorporated as well as information about existing relatives.
The site will be free to use and simple to navigate and award-winning local company QDK (Daelnet's parent company) is undertaking the design.
"The project will raise awareness about the local men and women who fought and died in the conflict and it will commemorate their lives," said Chris Foster, chairman of the Craven Community Projects Group.
John Easterby: One of those hounoured on
the 'Craven's Part in the Great War' website
"Because of the enormity of the task we are hoping people will contact us directly with details that we can add to the site in order to make it as accurate as possible."
The group is working in partnership with a wide range of individuals and organisations as well as representatives from local schools and community groups. People will be encouraged to take part in practical web-workshops where they will be given a free learning pack and a CD-ROM.
Charlotte Foster, group secretary, said, "Chris and I both had relatives who were born and bred in Craven and who fought in the Great War but they survived and returned home.
"The group feels honoured to be working on such a worthwhile project, that will pay tribute to the individuals who died and we are looking forward to sharing the outcomes of this research with the wider community."
Any family, organisation or group who has information is asked to get in touch with the group and if you would like to attend a project awareness session or web-workshop then contact Charlotte or Chris either by email at firstname.lastname@example.org; by phone on 01756 753609; or visit www.cpgw.org.uk
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