TWO teenage schoolgirls have paid tribute to their great grandfathers after their names were added to Dunbar’s war memorial.

The names of 16 men were added to the memorial ahead of a poignant rededication service on October 28.

Youngsters from Dunbar Primary School and Dunbar Grammar School were invited to the service, with more than 150 people in attendance.

The head boy and head girl at the secondary school, Thomas Leitch and Georgie Cross, along with their deputes, read out the names and a short citation for each of the new names.

Also from Dunbar Grammar School were Alayna Renton, great granddaughter of Staff Sergeant John Minto Clarke, and Amy, Rebecca and Sophie Porteous, the great granddaughters of Private James Gray, both of whom had their names added.

Alayna, S3, and Amy, S2, read out their relative’s name and a short citation.

Alayna, 14, said: “It was a privilege to be asked to speak in the service especially as it commemorated my great grandfather along with 15 other men who served and lost their lives in either the First or Second World War.”

About 200 brave men and women were already listed on the memorial, on the town’s Marine Road, after losing their lives in either the First or Second World Wars.

Research has been carried out over the last two years to identify other brave men or women who had a connection to the town but were not listed on the memorial.

Last year, Army Captain George William Ryland Griffin – known as Bill – was finally added to the memorial.

The 25-year-old was killed during active service in France on August 10, 1944.

That led to further research being carried out which identified the names of 11 men from the First World War and a further five from the Second World War who have now been added to the memorial.

Herbert Coutts, from the town’s community council, has been at the heart of the research, which also involved representatives from the town’s history society and Royal British Legion.

He told the Courier: “I think people were particularly touched by the fact there were so many kids there.

“There were 145 children from the primary school. They are in their final year and are all studying the Second World War. Teachers were quite keen that they attend and we had the youngsters from the Grammar School there as well.”

On the new names, he said: “We felt had the people been known about at the time by the people who were putting together the lists for the memorial, they would have been recognised.”

James Burns, Henry George Congdon, Thomas Fairbairn Frater, Louis Frederick Kerridge, John Mellis Macdonald, Hugh McKie, Frederick Cecil Reed, Christopher Robertson, Percival Sudworth, David James Thomson and Alfred Edward Turnbull all had links to the town and lost their lives as a result of the First World War.

John Minto Clarke, William Edward Davies, William David Gillespie, James Gray and John Henry Evershed Wright died as a result of the Second World War.

Provost John McMillan was among those at the ceremony, which he described as “a very poignant event”.

He said: “Having primary and secondary school pupils present was a fitting tribute.

“It was an occasion to remember these brave men as members of our community and honour their sacrifice.”