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New home hope for Fovant's First World War collection after village holds exhibition

By Dadcock  |  Posted: August 12, 2014

Fovant History Interest Group staged a two-day exhibition at the village hall

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An exhibition of First World War items drew hundreds of people to a village that played a major part in the conflict.

Fovant Village Hall was packed with material for a two-day exhibition organised by Fovant History Interest Group last weekend to mark the centenary of the start of the war.

Margaret McKenzie, one of the organisers along with Liz and Mike Harden, said she hoped the event would lead to a permanent home for the collection.

Miss McKenzie said: “I am very pleased with how it went.

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“We had more than 300 people and everyone was so interested in what was on show.

“It’s been a dream of mine to put all this material on display so that people can see it again. We had done displays before but this was a big event for us to stage it for two days. It was hard work but well worth it.

“And there was some serious discussion about how we can get a permanent home for this wonderful collection.

“Now that really is a dream of mine - I hope people would be able to help make that happen.”

The collection was previously displayed at the Pembroke Arms in Fovant but was removed when the pub closed.

Visitors to the exhibition were able to enjoy home made cakes and refreshments reflecting the era with Anzac biscuits and Camp coffee.

The exhibition included items relating to the troops and facilities including a hospital, railway and cinema set up for them.

Maps, photographs, postcards and letters from soldiers to their families were also on show.

Visitors were also able to buy postcards, badges and books including one by Liz Harden on the impact of the war on Fovant which proved so popular she had to produce extra copies to meet demand.

Fovant and nearby villages became a training area for troops that were sent to the frontline during the 1914 to 1918 war.

Many cut their regimental badges into the chalk hillside near the village which are maintained by Fovant Badges Society.

Dee Adcock

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