Special local WW1 artefacts on display at Barnstaple Museum

Diaries, photographs and other memorabilia belonging to a local World War One hero are on display at the Museum of Barnstaple and North Devon.

A Northam lady has lent the museum her grandfather Horace Percival Crocker’s personal artefacts from the Great War, which even includes his horse’s bit.HPCrocker

He served in the North Devon Hussars in Gallipoli, the Near East and France. Marilyn Crocker brought the items into the museum to form part of the ‘Not Forgotten’ exhibition. It’s hoped that some of the material can be included in a digital archive being created by ‘Devon Remembers’ – a project set up to commemorate the centenary of the war across the county.

Photo: Horace Percival Crocker of the North Devon Hussars

Museum Manager Alison Mills says: “We’re delighted to be able to share such personal items in our special exhibition. It really brings it home the sacrifice that generation made for us. I’d like to sincerely thank Marilyn for sharing these memories with us.”

Devon Remembers Project Development Officer Emma Waldron says: “The First World War is an internationally significant event and we are helping local communities to commemorate the centenary with a wide range of activities in around 50 communities over the next five years. This includes creating the digital archive and we very much hope to include some of Horace’s personal items in it.”

Photo: Horace Percival Crocker leading his horse Ginger

HPC leading the horsesExecutive Member for Culture, Councillor Derrick Spear, says: “This is a really significant exhibition, made even more touching by the loan of these personal items from a local hero. I would urge everyone to pay the museum a visit and remember the sacrifices that were made for us all during the First World War.”

The current exhibition runs until 5 July. The museum, which holds the Regimental HPC Pressed flowers from souvenir bookCollections of the Royal Devon Yeomanry, is also collecting material for a display in 2015 to mark the centenary of the Royal Devon Yeomanry’s service in Gallipoli.

For more information about the Devon Remembers project, contact emmakwaldron@btinternet.com

Photo: pressed flowers from a scrap book sent to Horace’s mother from Jerusalem

All photographs reproduced with kind permission of Marilyn Tolley