The Doubly Thankful Village of Catwick
Catwick, in the East Riding of Yorkshire, is one of the 52 settlements in England and Wales where all the men who left to fight in World War 1 returned. It is aswell one of only 14 places, where, having lost no men in the first war, lost none in World War 2 either, making it ‘Doubly Thankful’
The term ‘Thankful Village’ was first noted by the writer Arthur Mee. He wrote that a ‘Thankful Village’ was one which had lost no men in the Great War because all those who left to serve came home again. Of Catwick he wrote: "Thirty men went from Catwick to the Great War and thirty came back, though one left an arm behind,"
Mee made an initial list of 32 of such villages, however in August 2013, researchers discovered there were infact 52 civil parishes in England and Wales in which no members of the community were lost in WW1. Unfortunatly, there are no such places known in either Scotland or Ireland, where every town or village lost a member of their community.
Although there is no war memorial in the town of Catwick, the village blacksmith, John Hugill made his own unusual commemoration to the thirty men who returned to the village. He fixed onto the doorpost of his forge a lucky horseshoe and for each man who went to WW1, he nailed a coin around the horseshoe, when WW2 came he did the same again.The coins are mostly pennies and halfpennies, but there are also a German and a Swiss coin. Although the blacksmiths workshop is no longer still there, the wooden post has been handed down the generations and still remains in Catwick.
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