THE family of a Colchester soldier who died in battle have visited his grave... a year after the Gazette reunited them.

Keith Jackson, who lives in Helensburgh, found a photo of George Henry Flatt, a soldier who died aged 21 in 1918, whilst he was looking through his dad’s possessions.

The Gazette published an appeal to find the owner of the photograph last year and Sharon Mooney, from Colchester, said the brave soldier was her husband Chris’ great uncle.

After the paper connected the two families, Mr Jackson kindly sent the Mooney family the memorial card, which they have gratefully received.

The memorial card stands alongside a poppy the family has from the Tower of London art display.

It has even reunited them with their extended family.

A year on, the family have been to Becourt Military Cemetery, near Somme, to pay their respects to their ancestor.

Mrs Mooney said: “We took the Eurostar out and spent three nights in Paris before heading out to the French market town of Corbie in the Somme area.

“We booked a tour guide for the day on to take us to the sites and tailor the day to George’s last day.

“We started with the Thiepval memorial to the 72,000 missing British and South African soldiers who died and have no known grave.

“The visit to Beaumont Hamel was next, which is the Newfoundland memorial, the trenches can still be seen here and we got to walk through them.

“It was very thought provoking here.

“After lunch, we drove out to Tara Hill, just outside Albert. Here we learned more about George’s last day.”

George Flatt’s family lived in Hythe Hill.

He was in the 10th Battalion Essex Regiment and on August 22, they filed into their front line positions 11:30pm.

On August 23, they attacked the Germans and had taken Tara Hill by 6am.

George was one of the three Colchester men who lost their lives in this attack.

Mrs Mooney added: “We then visited his grave and laid a poppy wreath. It was quite an emotional visit, we read grave after grave of men that died on the same day.

“Where he is buried, is at the foot of the hill on which he and his comrades died.

“This attack was the beginning of the end for the Germans and it was one of the battles of the 100 day offensive which led to the armistice on November 11, 1918.”

After visiting George’s grave they headed to Lochnagar Crater and then finally Fricourt Cemetery, which is one of the few German cemeteries in the area.

Sharon knows a lot about the war, being an avid historian who is qualified as a tour guide in Colchester.