Shropshire

'Forgotten' war heroes remembered in ceremony

The Stanier 48773 locomotive: photo courtesy of Severn Valley Railway
Image caption The Stanier 48773 locomotive is a dedicated war memorial

Nine "forgotten" military railwaymen who died during the Battle of Britain are to be remembered in a special ceremony in Shropshire on Saturday.

The Sappers, or "combat engineers" were training on a railway in Derbyshire when a lone German bomber attacked.

Their names will be added to a Roll of Honour commemorating army railwaymen killed in action.

The roll is kept by the Stanier 8F Society, one of the Severn Valley Railway's locomotive owning groups.

The society owns and operates one of the surviving steam locomotives built for WWII, the Stanier LMS 48773.

The engine is officially a war memorial having been dedicated to the memory of the railway Sappers of WWII by the Dean of Hereford in a ceremony held 25 years ago.

More names added

Former "railway soldiers" of the Royal Engineers and their families will attend the ceremony at the Engine House Visitor Centre in Highley on Saturday where the 48773 is on display.

The names of 54 more military railwaymen will be added to the 354 already on the Roll of Honour.

Among the additions are the names of six Sappers who died in a head-on collision at the Longmoor Military Railway at Liss in Hampshire on 13 October 1956.

Brian Whitworth, who had been on the parade ground at Longmoor on the day of the crash and helped to carry away the dead and injured, is a guest at the ceremony.

Also expected is 93-year-old Cath Morris from Llangedwyn, near Oswestry, whose brother, Sgt Brian Jones, died in the accident.

The re-dedication will be carried out by Royal Engineers Brigadier Mike Stephens in a service led by the Rev James Symonds, an SVR Volunteer and Chaplain to the Warwickshire Branch of the British Legion.

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