Missing But Not Forgotten (Hardback)
Men of the Thiepval Memorial - Somme
As featured in The Northern Echo
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The Thiepval Memorial commemorates over 72,000 men who have no known grave; all went missing in the Somme sector during the three years of conflict that finally ended on 20 March 1918.
The book is not a military history of the Battle of the Somme, it is about personal remembrance, and features over 200 fascinating stories of the men who fought and died and whose final resting places have not been identified. Countries within the UK are all well represented, as are the men whose roots were in the far-flung reaches of the Empire and even 'foreigners'. The stories that lie behind each of the names carved into the memorial's panels illustrate the various backgrounds and differing lives of these men. The diverse social mix of the men – young and old, 'gentry' to 'labourers', actors, artists, clergy, poets, sportsmen, writers, and more – is something that stands out in the book. Despite their social differences, what is most apparent is the wide impact of the loss for over fifty widows, around 100 children left fatherless and over thirty families mourning more than one son. Ranks from private to lieutenant colonel are expertly covered, as well as all seven winners of the VC.
These captivating stories stand as remembrance for each man and to all the others on the memorial. They are meticulously organized so the book can be of use to visitors as they walk around the memorial; as a name is viewed, the story behind that name can be read.
As featured in articleNew Statesman, August 2016
..."The visitors centre at Thiepval displays a panel of photographs of '600 Missing' whose lives have been painstakingly rescued from oblivion by a Northumbrian couple, Ken and Pam Linge. Missing But Not Forgotten: Men of the Thievpal Memorial, Somme, tells us some of these men's stories".
A book I will definitely have with me next time I visit Thiepval.Western Front Association No. 106
As featured in`Northern Echo
As featured in articleSoldier, July 2016
A book I will definitely have with me when next I visit Thiepval.Stand To! Western Front Assc No.106
In a few months' time, the Thiepval Memorial in the Somme region of Northern France will be the focus of much media attention as commemorations of the Battle of the Somme's centenary take place.Your Family History - Spring 2016
The memorial itself commemorates more than 72,000 Allied men whose graves have never been identified. This book specifically explores what is known about the lives and service of 200 of those men.
The men selected aptly represent the wide variety of those who fought in the epic conflict , from labourers to gentry, from humble Tommies to VC recipients. Photographs, diary entries and other accounts bring at least a few of the sobering ranks of names to life.
As featured inThis England - Spring 2016
As featured in.Who Do You Think You Are?
… fascinating new book.'Hexham Courant
The Thiepval Memorial, situated about 15 miles south of Arras, is the largest British war memorial in the world. On it are inscribed names of over 72,000 men who were killed in the Somme sector between 1 July 1915 and 20 March 1918 and who have no known grave. This memorial is visited every year by around 160,000 people. Missing But Not Forgotten provides much needed insight into the nature, history and human significance of this important memorial.Remembering War Blog
Even one hundred years on from the start of the First World War the scale of the human tragedy remains incomprehensible. Missing But Not Forgotten helps us to understand how the Thiepval Memorial was planned to commemorate British and South African dead, and how the cemetery in front of it placed British and French dead together as a powerful symbol of Franco-British friendship.
Missing But Not Forgotten records that of the 1.1 million British and Commonwealth service men and women who died in the First World War only 56 per cent have marked graves. In addition to bearing the tragedy of personal loss, relatives and friends of those killed had to deal with the agony of the uncertainty of where and how and often whether the death had occurred.
The Thiepval memorial rises on 16 substantial rectangular columns or (piers) and on the faces of these columns the names of the missing are inscribed. Missing But Not Forgotten explains the organisation of the panels, listing for each panel the regiments and corps recorded. In total the memorial records the names of men in 137 regiments and corps.
The task the authors set themselves in the face of these huge losses and the vastness of the memorial was to try to set these in a context and to help visitors to the memorial to grasp something of the human significance of the lives behind the thousands of names that are carved into these memorial stones. They have gone some way towards achieving this by selecting a few names from each panel and researching the brief lives of each soldier. The result is insight into most ranks of the military and levels of society. Always one is confronted by the loss of human potential, the loss of men who had so much to give - and of the heartbreak suffered by so many families “back home”. In total there are 200 one page biographies and each, with photographs, tells of remarkable men.
The greater part of Missing But Not Forgotten is the biographies. Chapter 5 describes the many sources which the researchers used in the course of their work - information which could be useful to anyone else wishing to carry out research into the First World War. Chapter 6 gives a brief history of the village of Thiepval and its memorial up to the present day.
Missing But Not Forgotten is a useful reference book for anyone interested in the Thiepval Memorial and especially for anyone visiting the memorial. With the personal stories of 200 of the many men who are commemorated on this huge memorial, this book helps us to appreciate the great sacrifices and tragedy of the Great War.
As seen on.The War Poetry Website
The book represents part of a huge undertaking by the authors to provide the stories of all the missing men commemorated at Thiepval and provide them with a fitting memorial. It does not aim to provide the history of the First World War at the Somme but, rather, provides the personal stories of a sample of the men who fell. To avoid the volume becoming unwieldy, only 200 of the over 72,000 biographies are included. It must have been almost impossible to decide which individuals to include but an attempt has been made to include examples from each battalion and regiment represented at Thiepval.Karen Cummings, Professional Family History
What is demonstrated is the range of social backgrounds, educational levels and ranks of those who were killed at the Somme. George Leonard Jenkins, a Private in the East Surrey Regiment, was the son of a manager to a metal merchant. Alexander Young, a Lieutenant in the South African Infantry, was educated at Model School, Galway and was awarded the Victoria Cross for services during Boer War. Claude Theodore Church, a Sergeant in the Norfolk Regiment was a footman serving in the Royal Mews at Buckingham Palace.
The biographical entries for each serviceman contain details of parents, wives, siblings, extracts from letters home and extracts from the letters sent to grieving parents and wives by superior officers and comrades notifying them that their loved one was missing or dead. There are comments about the individual’s disposition “always so cheery”, “I considered him a friend” and so on that bring to life the faceless names on the memorial. There are many tales of a number of brothers who died within a short time of one another. One particularly poignant story is the entry for Frederick William Bennett and his friend William Bentley. Both lived in Burton Street in Tutbury near Burton-on-Trent and worked at the local Nestle’s Condensary. They enlisted together and served in Gallipoli, Egypt and France. On 30th September 1916 they were both killed by the same shell in fighting near Thiepval...
... In summary the book provides a fitting memorial to a number of those who fell at the Somme and even where an individual is not included it is possible to gain from the stories of those in the same battalion and regiment.
The book is not a military history of the Battle of the Somme, it is about personal remembrance, and features over 200 fascinating stories of the men who fought and died and whose resting places have not been identified. The stories that lie behind each of the names carved into the memorial’s panels illustrate the various backgrounds and differing lives of these men.Somme Battlefields.com
These captivating stories stand as remembrance for each man and to all the others on the memorial. They are meticulously organised so the book can be of use to visitors as they walk around the memorial; as a name is viewed, the story behind that name can be read.
Missing But Not Forgotten compiled and written by Pam and Ken Linge is one of the best homage’s to those who died on the Somme with no known grave. On the famous Thiepval Memorial there are 72,000 names of those who paid the ultimate sacrifice and are remembered on the many panels.Paul Diggett - Amazon Reviewer
This book gives short biographies of some of those men on the Thiepval Memorial and have done this in conjunction with the Thiepval Project.
The book is easily set up in to chapters so that you can understand the definition of what ‘Missing’ meant and explains that at some point in the war they were classified as missing. That investigations show that some of those classified as missing, were found to have survived, or being treated in Military Hospital or were Prisoners of War.
There is also an explanation of the Thiepval Memorial; in that it is the largest British Memorial anywhere in the world and that it is also a Battle Memorial as well as a Memorial to the Missing. It explains why the location of the memorial and who designed it, how and what it is built it. The cost of the memorial was around £117,000 roughly £6 million in modern money.
The most haunting part of this book are the short biographies of those on the memorial along with their picture. Looking at their pictures and biographies just reminds you how young and brave those men were, and we owe them a great deal. Besides the soldiers it also explains there would have been well known figures such as those in the Footballers Battalion, cricketers and other sportsmen.
This is a wonderful book, a book that honours the dead and remembers the missing, well researched and well written. A fantastic reference book and memorial to a deadly campaign.
The tireless work of Pam and Ken Linge to honour the men on the Thiepval memorial has resulted in this superb book. The main part of the book has biographies of more than 200 men and is particularly engaging.Whilst this serves as a remembrance for the men and documents where and how their lives were lost, I found the whole social history element particularly fascinating, understanding what their family backgrounds and occupations had been prior to signing up.Sue Duncombe
The book is a very easy read in terms of being able to dip in and out of it, but a difficult read when you consider the impact of the deaths of these men on their spouses, children, siblings, parents and friends.
This is a quite fantastic book, listing the fullest details of some 200 of the Missing of the Somme, painstakingly researched by Ken and Pam Linge, including photos of those identified in the book. I cannot rate the book too highly since the book also gives details of how they carried out their research. The stories attached to individuals are as detailed as could be wished for. Well done Pam and Ken.GLYNDWR WATKINS