Emsworth war dead remembered in First World War exhibition – Nostalgia

A map with poppys placed where family losses occurred in Emsworth during the First World War.
A map with poppys placed where family losses occurred in Emsworth during the First World War.
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I wonder how many of you know that Emsworth had a higher proportion of losses in the First World War than many other communities?

Emsworth losses were put at 48 per cent compared to 11 per cent across the rest of the UK. This could be attributed to the high losses in the major sea battles of Coronel and Jutland.

Some of the  exhibits on display at Emsworth Museum.

Some of the exhibits on display at Emsworth Museum.

Emsworth Museum’s exhibition commemorating the men of Emsworth who served in the First World War ends on Sunday, Armistice Day.

This display, which took almost two years to put together, records the different locations around the world where Emsworth men served and shows the history of the war from the perspective of local people.

Emsworth men were lost within a month of the start of the conflict in 1914. That continued right through to within three days of it ending four years later. One hundred and fifty-one local men died during those four years and poppies on an Emsworth street map show where most of the families lived. 

In addition to a collection of medals, artefacts and memorabilia the collection is enhanced by poppies hand-knitted by museum volunteer steward Maureen Barrett, that are spread around them.

Maureen Barrett and curator, Jane Kidd who put together the exhibition at Emsworth Museum.

Maureen Barrett and curator, Jane Kidd who put together the exhibition at Emsworth Museum.

The display also illustrates the home conditions for the average working family at the time – very few had gas or electricity, cooking was often done on a coal-fired range and the toilet was outside.

Jane Kidd's late father Bob Duncan worked on researching the material for almost two years but became ill in May and died in August. Jane and her family promised Bob they would complete the research and set up the exhibition.

This, the last of Emsworth Museum’s ‘ special' exhibitions for 2018, also shows the support provided to the fighting forces by horses, mules, dogs and homing pigeons – and is a display that should not be missed.  

Emsworth Museum is open on Saturday, November 10, from 10.30am to 4.30pm and on Armistice Day itself, Sunday, November 11, from midday until 4.30pm. Admission is free and a stairlift is available.  

It could be one of 100 streets in Portsmouth but this is Pains Road, Southsea, in 1906. 'Picture: Barry Cox Collection.

It could be one of 100 streets in Portsmouth but this is Pains Road, Southsea, in 1906. 'Picture: Barry Cox Collection.

• The seemingly obligatory delivery boy complete with his carrier bike, both of which always seem to appear in these types of photographs,  doesn’t let us down in the picture on the facing page of sweeping and near-deserted Pain’s Road at Southsea. It is now part of Somers Town I believe.

Today of course there are numerous cars  parked on either side of the road and many of the houses have become bedsits for the student population.

This view was taken from St Andrew’s Road looking towards Somers Road.