A local man is hoping ‘MAIL’ readers can help him identify six soldiers pictured a century ago with his grandfather.
The photo of Alexander Lyttle has been on display in the family home for generations and his grandson Paul (70) has decided it’s time to find out who the other men are in the hundred-year-old snap.
The picture shows five soldiers at Seaforde camp in Sussex where troops would have gone to finish their training.
“We haven’t a clue who the other six people are,” said Paul. “They would have been local we think. They were members of the 16th battalion of the Royal Irish Regiment. Most of them were recruited in and around the local area.
“They would have trained in Brownlow House.”
Paul added: “My grandfather was an older soldier. The average age of soldiers was 19 or 20. My grandfather was born in 1884. He’d have been in his thirties when the First World War started.”
“He was shipped to Dublin during the 1916 rising. After that he went to fight in the First World War. When he came back home he never went back to active service because he had part of his heel blown off fighting in the Battle of Messines in 1917.”
Paul commented: “He didn’t talk about the First World War. All he would say was, ‘You don’t want to know, son. It was death on buck wire.’ He would talk for hours about the Boer War. My grandfather and his brother fought in the Boer War. He had great respect for the Boers as fighters.”
Alexander Lyttle lived in Hill Street at the time of WWI and afterwards moved to Victoria Street. He died in 1969 from gangerine which set in on the site of his WWI wound.
If anyone can identify any of the other soldiers in the photo they should call the ‘MAIL’ on 3832 7777.