A SOLDIER buried in Lye and Wollescote Cemetery who was killed in action during the Battle of the Somme has been commemorated.

The area’s Royal British Legion branch has donated a wreath to the Friends of Lye and Wollescote Cemetery which has been laid at the foot of Lieutenant Turner’s burial place, which the group has called a “fitting tribute”.

Lieutenant Turner died in November 1916, four months after the battle – which marked its 100th anniversary on July 1 – begun.

Sue Smith, the friends group secretary, said: “We were thrilled to receive a poppy wreath from the Lye and Wollescote branch of The Royal British Legion in recognition of our work.

“We have laid the wreath at the commemorative grave of Lieutenant Turner who was killed in action on the Somme. A fitting tribute we felt.”

Formed a year ago off the back of the refurbishment of the Thomas Robinson Building, formally known as the Lye and Wollescote Chapels, the friends’ group aim to provide an accessible place which celebrates the heritage of local people and the cemetery.

The cemetery is the resting place of many former service-men, with the group receiving enquiries from relatives as far away as Canada and Australia.

Now 10-strong, the friends attend regular meetings and also take part in a tidy up of the cemetery.

Mrs Smith added: “We have made tremendous headway in the past year, the results clear to see, with many of the older graves being tidied by digging out weeds, unwanted trees and we have recently cleared two paths which were overgrown.

“Our future aim is to provide a couple of benches plus section markers and a map of the cemetery, to enable visitors to more easily trace the graves of relatives buried there.”

But to enable to group to reach their goal they need money and are planning fundraising events in the near future. The group will also be conducting tours around the cemetery during the heritage open weekend which is being held on September 10 and 11.

For more information about the work of the Friends of Lye and Wollescote Cemetery, which meets on the first Saturday of every month between 9.30am and noon, visit www.lyeandwollescote.info/friends.htm