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Second World War rescue dog among 'Hall of Heroes'

Rip the dog with his handler, Mr King. Photo: PDSA/PA Wire

A Second World War rescue dog credited with saving more than 100 lives is among a new "Hall of Heroes" celebrating heroic figures from spanning centuries of history.

Rip the rescue dog, who searched for people buried in the rubble after bombing raids during the Blitz, is just one character included in the new collection aimed at celebrating everyone from unsung underdogs to wartime heroes.

Family history website Findmypast wants people to share their own heroic family figures to help create the "Hall of Heroes" reflecting figures from throughout history, with the site donating £10 to the British Red Cross for every real-life story published.

Scruffy stray terrier Rip was adopted by Mr E King, an Air Raid Precaution Warden (A.R.P.) on duty in Poplar, East London Credit: PDSA

To mark the launch of its campaign, the site is releasing four new sets of records to help people find out more about their own family heroes - Victoria Cross (VC) Recipients 1854-2006; the Royal Navy 1914 Star Medal Roll 1914-1920; the Marriage Registers of the British Royal Marines 1813-1920; and the Falklands War British Deaths 1982.

Rip, who was originally found in Poplar, London, in 1940 by an air raid warden, was awarded the Dickin Medal for bravery in 1945, and died in 1946 after a courageous life.

Holly Thomas, historian and writer at Findmypast, said:

It's great to be able to celebrate the bravery and courage of figures in our history. The 'Hall of Heroes' allows the lives of well-documented famous figures to be recognised alongside the bravery of the everyman, including maids, miners and even rescue dogs.

– Holly Thomas, Findmypast