A book about one village’s war memorial
Struck by the fact that a village close to his Devon home, Lydford on the edge of Dartmoor, had names not only from both world wars on its memorial, but also fatalities from the comparatively recent conflicts in the Falklands and Iraq, Aslet resolved to research and write the stories behind these nameless names. His book is at once a touching tribute to ordinary lives hallowed by the horrible accident of being brutally cut off long before their allotted time; and a vivid testimony to why memory – personal and collective – matters so much both to individuals, and to our increasingly fissiparous and fractured nation.
I have always been drawn to the memorials found in the villages throughout Britain. I look at the names and it’s always sad to see a host of soldiers with the same last name, and realize that an entire family was devastated by the Great War or World War II. I feel this is going to be a desperately sad book but I think I’m going to have to read it. The book details the lives and deaths of the 22 men and one woman who are listed on the memorial in this small village of just 458 inhabitants.