Burials for soldiers of WW1

Burials will take place today for two WW1 soldiers killed in action almost 100 years ago and later identified by their remains.

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Fallen WW1 soldiers laid to rest after nearly a century

English hymns echoed around a French First World War cemetery today as two soldiers, killed almost a century ago, were laid to rest on St George's Day.

Lieutenant John Pritchard and Private Christopher Elphick died on the battlefield in 1917 and remained undiscovered for more than 90 years.

ITV News' Europe Editor James Mates witnessed the ceremony in northern France:

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Families remember World War One soldiers

The families of two British soldiers killed during World War One have finally been able to lay them to rest.

It's almost 100 years since Lieutenant John Harold Pritchard and Private Christopher Elphick were killed in action.

Their bodies were found decades after the war, and its taken years to trace their families, but today their funerals were held with full military honours.

ITV News' Lucrezia Millarini reports.

Seven unknown soldiers laid to rest

The unknown soldiers were laid to rest alongside the bodies of Lieutenant John Pritchard & Private Christopher Elphick

The remains of seven unknown soldiers have been laid to rest in a military cemetery in France.

The Ministry of Defence identified that two of the soldiers served with the Honorary Artillery Company, one served with the South Staffordshire Regiment and one with the Queen's Royal West Surrey Regiment.

Despite forensic testing it was not possible to identify the remains of three soldiers.

Funerals for World War One soldiers begin

Members of the Honourable Artillery Company carry the coffin into the cemetery
Members of the Honourable Artillery Company carry the coffin into the cemetery

Relatives of two soldiers who died in northern France in 1917 are paying their final respects at their funerals.

The bodies of Lieutenant John Harold Pritchard and Private Christopher Douglas Elphick were discovered in 2009, but they were not identified till later.

They are now being reburied in the Honourable Artillery Company Military Cemetery.

Both men died during an enemy attack in 1917
Both men died during an enemy attack in 1917

Funeral to be held for soldiers who died in WW1

The families of two soldiers who died in northern France in World War 1, will pay their last respects later, 96 years after they died.

  • Lieutenant John Harold Pritchard served with the Honourable Artillery Company.
  • He was the eldest of three boys in a family of seven and came from South West London.
  • He was 31 when he died near Bullecourt on May 15th 1917.
  • Before the war he was a chorister at St Paul's Cathedral

Lt Pritchard's nephew, great nieces and their families will attend the service in Arras in France.

  • Private Christopher Douglas Elphick served in the same company as Pritchard and was killed in the same enemy attack on May 15th 1917.
  • He was born in Dulwich in South London and was 28-years-old when he died.
  • Before the war he worked as a clerk for the Prudential Insurance Company.

Pte Elphick's two grandsons and their families will attend his reburial in the Ecoust-St Mein Cemetery. Prince Michael of Kent will also attend in his capacity as HAC Royal Honorary Colonel.

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Funerals for WW1 soldiers killed almost 100 years ago

The funerals take place today for two WW1 soldiers killed in action almost 100 years ago and later identified by their remains.

Lieutenant John Harold Pritchard
Lieutenant John Harold Pritchard Credit: MoD

Lieutenant John Harold Pritchard and Pte Christopher Douglas Elphick of The Honourable Artillery Company were killed on 15th May 1917 during an enemy attack near Bullecourt in France. Their remains were found in a field in 2009.

Pte Christopher Douglas Elphick
Pte Christopher Douglas Elphick Credit: MoD

Lt Pritchard was identified by a silver identity bracelet and Pte Elphick by a signet ring bearing his initials.