“If you think, have a kindly thought, If you speak, speak generously, Of those who as heroes fought And died to keep you free”
Set up by the Black Country Society. Our aim is to highlight local men who died in the Great War and how they have been commemorated on war memorials. Its scope covers the whole of the present Dudley Municipal Borough and therefore includes the places which have come within its bounds since 1914.
There are over fifty memorials and the number of names exceeds three thousand. Research on the names has been extensive but inevitably errors and omissions occur. We would like to hear about them concentrated on life and work before 1914, involvement in military campaigns and where each man is buried or commemorated.
Charles Voce was the son of Robert and Mary Voce of Farlands Road, Oldswinford. He attended Stourbridge Grammar School from 1909 to 1913. He enlisted in the artillery and joined the 35th Brigade Royal Field Artillery and saw service with the 7th Division at Ypres. In Autumn 1917 the 7th Division was ordered to the Italian front. They endured a hard winter on the Asiago plateau and in October 1918 they advanced to the wide and fast-flowing river Piave to help in the final allied attack on the Austrians. At 6.25 a.m. on 27th October 1918 the attack began with a creeping barrage while the infantry crossed the last stretch of the Piave. It was a complete success. Gunner Charles Voce, however, had been seriously wounded at some point of the action. He was sent back to the Field Hospital at Genoa, where he died on the 28th October and is buried in the nearby Staglieno Cemetery. He was 21 years of age and he is name is commemorated on the Stourbridge, Oldswinford church and King Edward VI College Memorials.Search our Biographies