The Infinite Debt

Barrie Barnes

The Infinite Debt

Sentinel Press - only available from the author.

ISBN 061-3-0729544-7-0

Dedicated to the memory fo Dr John Markham of Beverley. A long time friend and fellow historian, who has over the years devoted himslf to recording history of the East Riding of Yorkshire and its people. He will be missed by all who knew him.

"By his own works let him be known".

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Notes on 'The Infinite Debt' (Beverley War Dead of WW2). When I finished writing my last book, 'Known unto God', I felt utterly burnt out, the effort of researching and writing something that was over 900 pages long made me think I would never write another book again. Every time I had visited the Memorial Gardens in Hengate, Beverley, for over 20 years, to look at the Great War memorial and the names recorded on it, I had always been aware of smaller memorials at the back of the gardens. I began to visit Beverley again and wandered into the area where these smaller memorials were kept on numerous occassions. Slowly my interest started to return and I browsed through the names on the WW2 Memorial, I noticed that many of the surnames on it were the same as some of those on the Great War Memorial and I wondered if this was coincidence or were they related? My curiosity was roused and I thought to myself "here we go again". I began my study in the Treasure House and unearthed many documents and photographs relating to the Fallen of WW2 and began trawling through the Beverley news-papers from 1940 to 1956 numerous times. Slowly but surely a picture bagan to emerge of the men and women recorded on the memorial plaque, I placed fliers in pubs and other public buildings appealing for information about families and was contacted by many families living in and around Beverley. On Ancestry many of the relatives of the Beverley war dead had family trees recorded, I contacted them and exchanged pictures and information. I trawled through the Beverley cemeterys in all weathers to find war graves and family plots, many surprises came to light, in one cemetery I discovered Italian and Russian POW graves, Free French soldiers graves, victims of the Blitz and a number of men who were not recorded on the WW2 memorial. The amount of information preserved is very little when I compared it to the information I found for the Great War study (Known unto God) and as a result this book will be less than half the size of that one and much cheaper. 2015 will be the last year I will work on this study, after which it will go to the printers and all of the information I have gathered will be placed in the public domain once it is published. The archive I have built up from this study will be given to the Treasure House where it will be preserved for posterity.

 

'The Infinite Debt'

 

By Rachel Bates 1942

 

 

A stranger died for me, groaned and dropped and died somewhere, his fire quenched utterley in a shrivelling air.

 

And how shall I requite, his wounds, his death, who dies unknown and keeps my feeble flame alight with ransom of his own.

 

All life all loves his fee, whose perished fire conserves my spark, who bought the brightening day for me and for himself the dark.

 

© 2015 Barrie Barnes