Memorial bench pays tribute to fallen soldier who was son of former Leamington mayor

A special bench made in memory of a fallen First World War soldier was used by veterans during the Remembrance service in Leamington on Sunday.

The bench, created by Rowington resident John Caldwell who has his own garden furniture business, bears the image, name and details of Lt Edwin Cashmore - Mr Caldwell’s great uncle who died, aged just 19, of his wounds at The Somme on October 4 1918.

Mr Caldwell intends to have the bench put in a spot within a mile of where Mr Cashmore was buried at Brie British Cemetery in France but in the meantime he put it to good use by bringing it along on Sunday to be used by former servicemen.

He said: “The nice thing was that people came up and spoke to us after the service and an assistant head of North Leamington School said he was sure he had seen my great uncle’s name on the plaque they have there due to the school’s connection with the former Leamington School for Boys.

“He called me later to tell me that it was there and I was invited along to their remembrance service on Tuesday.

“I remember my grand mother talking about Edwin but it’s not until you get older you realise 100 years was not very long ago.”

Lt Cashmore was the son of the then Leamington mayor George Cashmore.

In a tragic turn of events, Mr Cashmore is said to have received confirmation of his son’s death on the day he announced the end of the war to the town.

Mr Cashmore’s older son George, who was also serving in the war, is said to have spent the final hours of Edwin’s life at his bedside.

Mr Caldwell is hoping the mayor of Brie will allow the bench to be sited at the end of a bridge overlooking the Somme River and will take it over to France next year.