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Ipswich remembers those who fell for their country in two world wars

PUBLISHED: 14:58 06 November 2019 | UPDATED: 15:56 06 November 2019

Cornhill displays men from Ipswich who died in the two world wars  Picture: RACHEL EDGE

Cornhill displays men from Ipswich who died in the two world wars Picture: RACHEL EDGE

RACHEL EDGE

Faces of Ipswich servicemen who gave their lives in the two world wars have returned to the town's Cornhill in a special exhibition to mark the run-up to Remembrance Sunday and Armistice Day this weekend.

Cornhill displays men from Ipswich who died in the two world wars  Picture: RACHEL EDGE
Cornhill displays men from Ipswich who died in the two world wars Picture: RACHEL EDGE

The exhibition was unveiled showing the faces and stories ranging from a 16-year-old ship's cook killed when his vessel was blown up in the First World War off Orfordness to the headmaster of a school in Malaya who died after being taken prisoner by Japanese forces.

A total of 48 men are recorded on the cubes that have been put up by the Ipswich War Memorial Project which has researched the life stories of more than 2,500 men and women from the town who lost their lives in conflicts from the Boer War at the turn of the 20th Century through to 2007.

Cornhill displays men from Ipswich who died in the two world wars  Picture: RACHEL EDGE
Cornhill displays men from Ipswich who died in the two world wars Picture: RACHEL EDGE

The youngest victim was William Trusler who died in 1916 while working as a ship's cook on the Trawler Burnley that had been commandeered for wartime work. He is the youngest person remembered on the war memorial at Christchurch Park.

Eric Reeve was born in Ipswich and went to school at St Joseph's College before going to work in Singapore and Malaya. He became a headmaster and joined the Straits Settlements Volunteer Force as a Lieutenant.

Cornhill displays men from Ipswich who died in the two world wars  Picture: RACHEL EDGECornhill displays men from Ipswich who died in the two world wars Picture: RACHEL EDGE

After the invasion by the Japanese, he was taken to work on the notorious Burma Railway - but died of sickness at the end of 1943.

The display has been put together by Andrew Beal and Helen Ely of the C and there will be a full exhibition of their research at the Reg Driver Centre in Christchurch Park over the weekend.

Cornhill displays men from Ipswich who died in the two world wars  Picture: RACHEL EDGE
Cornhill displays men from Ipswich who died in the two world wars Picture: RACHEL EDGE

On Saturday afternoon at 2pm there will be a lecture explaining some of the stories that researchers have uncovered about the role of Ipswich service personnel during the wars.

As well as the display on the Cornhill, there is also an indoor display in the Sailmakers shopping centre that has attracted considerable interest over the last few weeks.

Cornhill displays men from Ipswich who died in the two world wars  Picture: RACHEL EDGECornhill displays men from Ipswich who died in the two world wars Picture: RACHEL EDGE

The town's main Remembrance Service is being held at the Cenotaph in Christchurch Park on Sunday with the event starting at 10.30am.

On Monday there will be Armistice Day ceremonies at the Fields of Honour for First and Second World War victims in the Old Cemetery.

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