A CEREMONY recognising the sacrifice of 220 people during the two world wars has taken place at Dunbar War Memorial.

About 200 names were on the town’s memorial until 2018, when Army Captain George William Ryland Griffin’s name was added.

Since then, more than a dozen more names have been added to recognise the efforts of men and women connected with the town who lost their lives during the conflicts.

On July 3, representatives from the town’s churches – including the Rev Gordon Stevenson, Dunbar Parish Church; Canon Joe McMullan, of Our Lady of the Waves Church; and the Rev Diana Hall, St Anne’s Scottish Episcopal and Methodist Church – and community council were joined by Provost John McMillan; the county’s Lord Lieutenant, Roderick Urquhart; and Mary Duncan, Honorary Canadian Consul for Scotland, the Canadian Government; on Marine Road to celebrate the memorial’s 100th anniversary.

Richard Donaldson Welsh, aged 33; William Scott Welsh, 37; and Samuel Harrington Henderson, 23; were the latest names to be added to the memorial.

Canada’s Mrs Duncan was present as two of these three men had emigrated to Canada.

Richard Donaldson Welsh moved there in 1907 when aged 21 and returned to Europe with the 29th Battalion of the Canadian Expeditionary Force.

Meanwhile, William Scott Welsh had emigrated to Canada two years earlier and returned to Europe with the 210th Battalion of the Canadian Expeditionary Force, and later transferred to the 3rd Battalion of the Canadian Machine Gun Corps.

Dunbar Grammar School pupils were on hand to read citations at the memorial.

Herbert Coutts, of Dunbar War Memorial working group, described the ceremony as “very meaningful”.

The working group was set up ahead of Armistice Day 2018 with two objectives.

Mr Coutts said: “The restoration of the memorial, conservation and enhancement of it, but also we became aware of this suggestion that there were people, just because of the circumstances at the time, whose names should have gone on the memorial but did not.

“That led us into the second phase of the work, which more or less started at the beginning of 2019.

“We did a lot of research into the names and we added 16 names at that time.

“A degree of thought went into that and we added the plaque and quite intentionally space was left for any other names that might emerge.

“It was something of a surprise that three more have emerged more recently but two of them were as a result of a local man named Rob Bisset.

“The third one was essentially thanks to Will Collin, who during lockdown was walking through the parish churchyard and he saw the name on a gravestone of a person aged 23.

“That started us off and between us we investigated him and eventually it became clear there was a young guy who died in uniform during the war who had not been commemorated.”

Names on the memorial had become faded overtime, partly due to the weather, with the memorial exposed to the North Sea.

Mr Coutts was pleased to see the memorial restored and stressed that there was still space for names to be added.

He said: “Our suspicion is there are still some, mostly from the First World War, missing.

“Some were predeceased by their parents, others parents had moved away.

“People did their best but it very much depended on relatives coming forward and seeing what happened.”