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Remembered Today:

Ibstock War Memorial

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A 90 year old blunder.

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Anyone researching names on a war memorial has to be alert to what I call the “name game”. Possible alternative spellings, the transposition of forenames, and the difference between family names and those used on official documents, are all typical examples.

But it's easy to be distracted and you might not expect both the CWGC register and SDGW entry for the same soldier to be wrong. Yet this is what had happened with Pte. 3293 Badcock.H.C. Somehow he had become “Badcook.H.C”, both in CWGC register and sadly on the Menin Gate itself. This is despite Army records clearly showing his correct name on both his MIC and service papers. Had Henry Camp Badcock's real not been so distinct the error might have remained undetected, but there it was all these years later still plainly wrong.


Photo courtsey of Aurel Sercu, June 2008

If nothing else, researching the names on the Ibstock war memorial gave me the opportunity to correct a 90 year old error. So I raised the issue in 2008 in this thread:

Thanks to the good work of Terry Denham, the register was promptly corrected, but the Menin Gate is another matter. As one who knows recently commented

Sure, names are corrected from time to time, but that normally takes ... years. They only correct when there is need to replace the whole "tablet" ... For whatever reason, like a crack, or other material problems. So correcting Badcook > Badcock may take a very long time !

It's no surprise that it is still wrong on every site that gives access to the “Soldiers Died in The Great War 1914-1919” database. Getting that changed too, may not be so easy.

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Not so unusual. I came upon a clergyman, a hospital chaplain buried in the UK within a mile of the hospital where he was chaplain, and following an error on the death certificate he was wrongly named not just in Soldiers Died and the CWGC, but in the GRO as well.



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