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Christleton WWI Remembrance Project

How we created the Project

2014 Click

June 2014

  • Great War Stories

    Great War Stories

Members of the Project Team and School Staff & Students meet for a photo call at the Church War Memorial
Photograph by Student Lawrence Hirst

Christleton High School History Hot Scholars and Staff represented the School

Christleton High School

In June 2014 Christleton High School History Department lead an Assembly on aspects of WWI for a whole year group in the School Hall
  • Filming


The Assembly was filmed for the project by student Lawrence Hirst

During the summer several exhibitions were put on in the Village, to stimulate interest and to display material researched

Farmers Market

  • Farmers Market

    Farmers Market

  • Oldest Resident Cliff Bridge came to talk about his War Service

    Oldest Resident Cliff Bridge came to talk about his War Service

  • David Cummings Project leader is pictured talking to a resident and his son about one of the images found of the crashed aircraft of Pilot Norman Wildig

    David Cummings Project leader is pictured talking to a resident and his son about one of the images found of the crashed aircraft of Pilot Norman Wildig

Summer 2014

  • Open Morning

    Open Morning

History Group Members are on hand to talk to the Community about the aims of the project, ask for help, and show off some of the early research

Summer 2014

Exhibitions were put on at both the Village Show and Fete

  • Tony Watkins and David Cummings

    Tony Watkins and David Cummings

The Research Team held several filming sessions in the Village and here Tony Watkins and David Cummings are looking at evidence for Tom Broster, the Village Butcher who Tony has been researching through the internet, and finding him buried at Gallipoli.

We also interviewed families who had evidence of their relative’s involvement in WWI.

Here the team are meeting the Fisher Family and looking at photographs, letters and artefacts about Norman Wildig who lived at Hawthorn House.

Several residents have offered us photographs of the village during the war, and here Frank Jones has donated this image of grandfather Frank Evans on a War Horse on the Christleton Village Green.

August 4th National Commemoration at St. James’ Church

Project Leader David Cummings compiled a list of the fallen from WWI Village Heroes to be read out at this special service at St James Church. Full names, local addresses, places and dates of where they are commemorated or buried for each of the fallen were listed and read out, and a candle lit for each person. The congregation then walked to the War Memorial for a wreath laying ceremony, where a wreath of fresh red roses was laid to commemorate the fallen.

Launch Evening at The High School

In October 2014 we held a Project Launch Evening for the Community at Christleton High School

  • Former resident Dave Carter shows us his father’s Military Medal

    Former resident Dave Carter shows us his father’s Military Medal

  • High School Christleton

    High School Christleton

  • Glass Plates

    Glass Plates

Rowton resident Mike and Mrs Read are looking at an exhibition of black & white images that Mike has produced digitally for us from a series of glass plates and negatives donated to the Local History Group by the late Rae Cullimore.

65 guests enjoyed the Hospitality provided by the High School, enabling us to put on refreshments and a photographic exhibition in the Foyer and have an exhibition of artefacts and a talk in their new Cadet Force Theatre.

November 2014

The Cenotaph Remembrance Ceremony in Whitehall

  • Cenotaph London

    Cenotaph London

The Project team were delighted to be asked to represent the Western Defence Association and the Villages by laying a wreath at this ceremony on 11th November. Four young Hot Scholars and their teacher travelled to London, and were duly entertained by the Western Defence Association members at Whitehall & the Guards Chapel, before laying the wreath on behalf of the community during the ceremony. They met and saw famous politicians and dignitaries, and had the opportunity to visit the Tower to see the Memorial Poppies, as well as enjoying their brief stay in the capital.

Further Research

Nigel Meyrick a local historian from the Chester area, has been instrumental in helping us with the project. He had already been completing personal research on the Christleton War Memorial before learning of our project, and very kindly met with us to share his knowledge.

Nigel’s expertise together with that of staff and volunteers from the Cheshire Regimental Museum & Cheshire Archives & Local Studies Centre has enabled us to go deeper into the story than we thought possible.

Remembrance Day

  • Lawrence Hirst

    Lawrence Hirst

  • Luke Disley

    Luke Disley

  • Sophie Brown

    Sophie Brown

  • Joe Bentley

    Joe Bentley

  • Isabel Holland

    Isabel Holland

This special day enabled us to share with the Village how we created th project with some of our research into WWI . Folders containing facts & pictures about each of the fallen were displayed around the church window ledges, and stories of five of the fallen were read out by students from the Village who were the same age as some of those who went to war.

Images from

Remembrance Day

  • Joe Bentley

    Joe Bentley

  • Christleton War Memorial

    Christleton War Memorial

  • Christleton War Memorial Wreaths

    Christleton War Memorial Wreaths

Members of the Village Community, Parish Councils, British Legion, Uniformed Organisations, Church Choir

The Trumpeter who played the “Last Post” was Joe Bentley

Flowers and wreathes from the Community decorated the War Memorial

The Church choir led by Steve Roberts sang the Anthem, “Non Nobis Domine” from the film score of Henry V as their tribute to the fallen, replicating the efforts of the members of the church choir during WWI, who sang at every Memorial Service held to Commemorate the lives of those who died.

WWI re-enactment by Quantum Theatre

On 10th December 2014 the Project Team engaged the Quantum Theatre Group from London to perform their one act play about WWI “Your Country Needs You” for students at the High School. This was performed in the School Hall in front of an audience of 200 students from Year 9. The students were stimulated by the production, and engrossed thoroughly in the story line and by the exceptional performance of the members of the Company.
Photo P061, P063, P064, P067, P068,
  • Two memebers of the company with a student

    Two memebers of the company with a student

Two members of the company are pictured with a student from the High School who has carried out his own research into the life of George Davenport a South Wales Borderer who lived at Littleton.
2015 Click

The Project continues its research in 2015

  • Alan Robinson and Bery Cummings

    Alan Robinson and Bery Cummings

  • Alan Robinson and Bery Cummings

    Alan Robinson and Bery Cummings

The Local History Group invited WWI Expert Alan Robinson to give a talk on the Battle of the Somme at its January Meeting. A large audience listened intently to his graphic description of the events of that battle and examined many artefacts that Alan had brought for display.

Parish Council Open Morning March 2015

  • War Voices Project Stall

    War Voices Project Stall

  • Councillor Janet Brown with Stephen Mosley MP

    Councillor Janet Brown with Stephen Mosley MP

A stall was held at the Parish Council Open Morning in March to update villagers on the progress of the Great War Voices Project. Chester MP Stephen Mosley talks to Councillor Janet Brown about Joseph Parsonage, a member of her family and one of our fallen.

Filming the webmaster at work

  • Richard Nicholson and Phil Hirst

    Richard Nicholson and Phil Hirst

  • Filming the Timeline

    Filming the Timeline

  • Timeline on the iMac

    Timeline on the iMac

A great deal of time, patience and hard work has been given by webmaster Richard Nicholson to get this project on line. In these images Richard is demonstrating the method of constructing the timeline to filmmaker Phil Hirst.

Filming in the churchyard

Several sessions of filming and photography have taken place in the churchyard at St James with the kind permission of Rector Revd. Malcolm Cowan. In these images, filming was taking place at the grave of Percy Dobie, Prisoner of War from Littleton, and at the Family and Military Memorial stone to Joseph Parsonage, with relative Janet Brown.
  • David Cummings interviewing in the churchyard

    David Cummings interviewing in the churchyard

  • Janet Brown by her family grave

    Janet Brown by her family grave

Book Editing

The first meeting of the editorial team for the Heritage Lottery Funded book, took place at The Ring O Bells in April.
  • Christleton Great War Stories

    Christleton Great War Stories


Published December 2015

This Special Commemorative Publication

Parish Magazines Click

Parish Magazines

Project leader David Cummings writes a monthly column about the Village and its soldiers in WWI

August 2014.
The launch of the Christleton Village Great War Voices Project.

September 2014
The Work of the War Graves Commission and the story of some of the Fallen from the Village.

October 2014
War Horse in Christleton & William Mathews Chester & Wales Footballer buried in the churchyard

November 2014
Tynecot Cemetery pictured on front cover. The story of Donald & Catherine McLeod

December 2014
Remembering the Fallen. High School Students lay a wreath at the Cenotaph in Whitehall.

January 2015
The Story of Norman Wildig. RAF

February 2015
The story of Percy Dobie Prisoner of War. Part 1

March 2015.
The story of Percy Dobie & Nursing Sister Amy Dobie Part 2

Christleton WWI Remembrance Project