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Cookham book tells stories of WW1 soldiers who never came back

Soldiers from the village who died in the First World War are remembered in a new book.

We Will Remember Them is a 172-page work by a team of Cookham-based writers containing the stories of more than 100 soldiers who left for the war and never came back.

Mike Copland, one of the authors, described it as a work ‘everyone from Cookham should own’.

He said: “We are not glorifying the war, but these were young men, some of them in their 20s but many in their teens, who never came back.

“I think that without glorifying it there’s a message there that’s important.

“So many people lost their lives, it was such a horrific war.”

The book delves into the stories of all the village’s soldiers and the writing team have unearthed both amusing and heartbreaking details.

The writers found how one Cookham soldier was on the same boat as Lord Kitchener, the nation’s poster boy for the war, when it was blown up. Both were killed, along with the majority of those on board.

Mike described how the news had an impact on the British public similar to when Princess Diana died in 1997.

One family, the Emmetts, lost three sons and a cousin in the war, and in one weekend in 1915 eight men from Cookham died, seven in the Battle of Loos.

Mike said: “It can be depressing, you see lots were at school in 1911-12 and then three years later they have died.”

We Will Remember Them is on sale at Stationary Depot in Station Road for £7.

All proceeds will go to the Holy Trinity Restoration Fund.

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