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Thursday, 23 October 2014

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Canadian niece of fallen Ulverston soldier helps campaign

THE niece of a soldier who died in the First World War has made a donation to help restore the memorial that bears his name.

Private John Hemsley died in 1916, aged just 27, at the hands of German troops.

After reading an Evening Mail article about Ulverston Town Council’s efforts to raise £14,000 to restore the monument in Market Place, Joyce Lowe sent £50 – all the way from Canada.

Mrs Lowe, whose maiden name is Hemsley, was born in Ulverston – as were her parents Benjamin and Elizabeth – but moved to Ontario in 1926.

John Hemsley, her uncle on her father’s side, was also born in Ulverston but fought in the First Canadian Mounted Rifles during the war.

He died on April 18, 1916 defending Ypres, in Belgium. In a letter to the town council, Mrs Lowe wrote: “My cousin Ruby Egerton, in Newton-in-Cartmel, in Cumbria, sent me a copy of the Evening Mail as she knew I would be interested.”

She said her father also served in the forces, in the Canadian Navy, during the Second World War.

He was involved in the Atlantic run, on board ships that travelled between Canada and the UK between 1940 and 1945.

Mrs Lowe added: “When he was on leave he regularly visited family in Ulverston.”

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