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War medal found in field and returned to Melksham soldier’s family

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A MEDAL from the Second World War has been found in a field near Seend and returned to the soldier’s family.

Roger Vanstone found the medal whilst out in the fields near Seend with his metal detector when he came across the most unusual find.

The silver medal in perfect condition is clearly marked territorial and has the rank and name of the soldier it belonged to on the side.

Roger recognised immediately that the medal was significant and sought about a way of finding the owner of the medal.

Roger said, “I am always out with my metal detector and finding all sorts, but this was most unusual.

“The medal was in such good condition and with the name of the soldier on it, I knew I would have a chance of tracking down his family.”

His friend Penny England, was intrigued by the find and agreed to help track down the soldier’s family. She searched the internet with no luck before her husband reminded her that someone with the same surname as the soldier had lived in the village many years ago and he had a daughter.

Penny said, “I really wanted to help. It was clear that the medal would be important to someone. I searched the internet without any joy before I was reminded of a man called Alexander Gibson who used to live here.

“I tracked down the daughter of that man and it turns out it belonged to her father.”

The daughter of the soldier is Jane Giles and she was thrilled to get her father’s medal back. She said, “It’s amazing! We had no idea that he even had the medal as he didn’t talk about it much as it was quite traumatic for him.

“I have no idea how the medal ended up in the field or when, but I am so thankful to Roger and Penny for finding it and taking the time to return it to me.

“There is a great community spirit in Seend and I think this shows that. Roger could easily have sold the medal but instead he took the time to track me down.

“I met Roger and Penny in a pub and it was great to talk about my father and his army life and what I know.

“I have nothing but utter respect for them both for getting the medal back to me.”

Roger said, “It’s fantastic that with the help of Penny we could return the medal. It’s been interesting hearing about what Jane knows of her dad and his time in the army.”

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