A new twist has emerged following our report on the First World War medal discovered in a Boston garden shed.
At first it was believed the medal was awarded to a man called William Ladds. Since our report new enquiries have revealed that the medal may have in fact belonged to Walter Ladds who is thought to have been William’s nephew.
The current information came to light when a reader commented that the medal would not have been awarded to only those whom were killed in the war but that the majority of its recipients were survivors.
Ann Epton, whose family is from the Boston area, saw our story and did her own investigating - posting leads on the Boston Standard’s Facebook page and website. More leads have continued to come in from people believing they may be able to shed light on the mystery.
Miss Epton said: “I have been tracing my own family tree for 25 years and have about 7,000 names on it now so doing this has become a bit of an addiction for me.
“When I saw a reader’s comment that the medals were not awarded only to those who died in the war the most obvious starting point for me was to look at the old census records from the early 1900s.
“I found a link to the UK Royal Navy Reserve Service Records index and it’s then I saw the service number on the medal did not match up to William Ladds but instead was the number belonging to Walter.”
According to Miss Epton, who now lives in Surrey, Walter did not die in action but in 1959 in Boston. The Ladds were part of a fishing family with addresses in Oxford Street and Chapel of Ease Passage, Boston.
Miss Epton, 49, has an interesting ancestry herself, with ancestors ranging from a family of gypsies who settled in Boston to Priscilla Biggadike who was hanged at Lincoln Castle in 1868 for allegedly murdering her husband. She was later found innocent when her lodger confessed to the crime.
Ian Clayton, who originally discovered the medal, said: “The response has been incredible. People have been contacting me with no end of information.
“The news from Ann Epton has been really helpful. When I first saw the letters and numbers on the medal and traced back through information I got caught up in the romantic notion that I had matched it up with the serviceman William Ladds and should have done some double checking.
“People have been so generous with their information and I do hope we will be able to reunite the medal with descendants of its owner.”