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Treasure trove of World War I postcards discovered

Network Rail has now launched an appeal to trace the soldiers' families.

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Many of the postcards and papers date from during World War 1. (Network Rail via SWNS)

By Ellie Forbes via SWNS

A treasure trove of postcards dating back to World War I has been discovered during renovation work - to the roof of a train station.

The postcards were found in the crawl space of the roof at Stirling station, with some dating back as far as 1912.

Experts said they would have been sent to people in the area asking them to collect items which had been sent on the train.

The Caledonian Railway postcards and papers are in a fragile condition and will be preserved before being put on display in the future.

Some, dated April 1916, had been sent to troops stationed in the Barracks at Cambusbarron, Scotland, requesting they collect kit bags and parcels from the station.

Network Rail has now launched an appeal to trace the soldiers' families.

“It’s been incredible to see these postcards, many of which are more than one hundred years old and to find out about some of the items that were sent on the railway," said Helen Agnew, Network Rail project manager for the Stirling Station roof works.

"Finding these items in the roof of the station has already offered a fantastic insight into the past but to be able to trace any family members of those who served would be incredible.”

Network Rail contacted the regimental museums for the Gordon Highlanders, the Cameron Highlanders and the Black Watch in a bid to trace the named soldiers.

Museum experts revealed the 8th Battalion Seaforth Highlanders left for France in July 1915, landed at Boulogne and took over a sector in the line at Loos on August 6.

Details on the postcards allowed them to identify Captain and Quartermaster Arthur James MacDonald of the 8th Battalion of the Queens Own Cameron Highlanders.

It is thought Captain MacDonald was wounded on October 28, 1918, at the Battle of Cambrai.

Given this was only several weeks from Armistice, the Regimental Museum believes that it was likely he survived the war and possibly returned home.

They want to hear from anyone who has any information on Captain MacDonald.

Little is known about the other soldiers named on the postcards including 2nd Lt. J M or H Campbell, 11th Gordon Highlanders.

Private W Reddiford, B Company 11th Gordon Highlanders, Private George Rankine 6th Black Watch and Officer Commanding A Company, 11th Gordon Highlanders, were also named.

Ernie Pope, coordinator for The Highlander’s Museum said: “I believe the importance of remembrance is that everyone of us, in this country, will have a distant relative who either, took part in the Great War, or was impacted by it.

"We should never forget the suffering, loss and sacrifice made by so many during one of the darkest periods of world history.

“Let us all hope and pray we never see it’s like again.”

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