There has been much recently about the Portsmouth Pals and the local soldiers who fought in the First World War.
David Shepherd, of Boarhunt, near Fareham, tells me he was on television two years ago trying to trace the relatives of Arthur John Brading because a ‘Dead Man’s Penny’ came into his possession and he wanted to return it to its rightful owner.
Arthur was a skilled labourer who lived at 36, Silverlock Street, Tipner. He was an army reservist in December 1915 and was drafted to the British Expeditionary Force in March 1917.
He joined Howe Division of the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve on March 22 of that year and suffeered a knee injury. He returned home to convalesce but returned to France and rejoined Howe Division as an able seaman on December 2, 1917.
He was killed aged 25, along with 22 other members of Howe division, and ‘discharged dead’, as it was so delightfully put in those days, on December 30, 1917. He is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial in France.
Does Arthur count to be put on a local memorial somewhere as he was a ‘Pompey lad’ doing his bit?