The Pirton WW1 Project

The Pirton World War Project has three end goals:

  1. The book 'The Pride of Pirton' *1 documents all the men with a Pirton connection that served in the Great War.
  2. Ultimately to place as much of the research for the book as possible on this website.
  3. To undertake the above in such a way as to be able to add information and update it whenever and whatever comes to light in the future.

Most people in the village of Pirton are aware that a small team (Tony French, Chris Ryan and Jonty Wild) have now published a book, The Pride of Pirton, which documents all the men with a Pirton connection that served in World War 1. This includes those that sacrificed their lives and those that survived around 230 men.

We believe that this book in an important local historical book and perhaps the last chance to document the lives of these men in significant detail, however we recognise that the content will be mostly of interest to the villagers, the descendants of those listed and those with a general interest of the lives of men who served in the Great War.

If you are interested in a copy or more information visit Pirton WW1 Book

The Strategy for Publication

In identifying a strategy for publishing two things quickly became clear, 1) we needed a mechanism for receiving funding and applying for grants and 2) rather than raise money just to fund a one off project, provided it is still cost effective, it would be better to use the money to enable the project to be carried through in a way that would also provide facilities for future use by the village.

We have identified this strategy for production and the details are given below.

The Pirton Heritage Support Group

Our preferred methodology for the producing the WW1 book includes binding the books ourselves with our own equipment. This provides the flexibility to produce books in low numbers, avoids the need to hold large stocks of books and much or the ‘up front’ printing costs. It will then also enable other organisations and individuals to adopt the same strategy and produce other publications and books in a cost effective way and to a ‘bookshop’ standard.

If this was to be carried through we needed a formally organised body to receive and raise funds by seeking donations, sponsorship applying for grants and organising other forms of fund raising and also to control the equipment and assist organisations and individuals to use it.

Our solution was to form the Pirton Heritage Support Group or PHSG and to this end the following has been undertaken:

  1. A constitution has been written (available at or a paper copy upon request).
  2. An initial committee formed, (Diane Bailey, Tony French, Rosie Hamilton McLeod, Chris Ryan and Jonty Wild).
  3. Officers elected (Jonty Wild – Chairman, Tony French – Treasurer, Diane Bailey – Secretary).
  4. The PHSG aims agreed – “The aim of the PHSG is to conserve, preserve, record and where possible, to make the history of Pirton accessible to Pirton residents and other interested parties.”
  5. A bank account opened (cheques payable to Pirton Heritage Support Group or PHSG).
  6. The first project adopted, (the publication of the Pirton WW1 book, this one to be undertaken by a sub-group of the PHSG (Tony French, Chris Ryan and Jonty Wild).
  7. A preferred strategy for the publication of the Pirton WW1 book agreed.


This section details the strategy for publishing the Pirton WW1 book; however, this is also a strategy which provides a generic approach for other Pirton publications that the PHSG or any other organisation or individual could to adopt. To that end this section details the generic strategy which is followed by the specific strategy for the Pirton WW1 book.

Generic Strategy

  1. Identify equipment to enable in professional quality in-house binding of publications.
  2. Identify potential uses for, and potential users of, that equipment, in order to substantiate the perceived value of this approach and to ensure that there is a future use for it.
  3. Raise funds to purchase that equipment.
Advantages of this approach
  1. Total control over production numbers.
  2. Provides the capability to cost effectively produce any number of individual publications from 1 to a 1000 +.

    • Almost any paper type can be bound.
    • Any printing can be used, from that produced by a home deskjet to fully professional print house.
    • The bound length of publication is restricted to A4, but in landscape format much larger documents could be bound

  3. Avoids the need to hold large stocks and the associated issues relating to upfront cost, storage and risk of deterioration.
  4. Provides the capability to add new information for future copies whilst limiting the cost implications.
  5. The machinery, once purchased, can be used for any future projects, by the PHSG for other local organisations or individuals.
  1. Printing costs may be higher than traditional printing (per copy).
  2. Some restrictions on book cover options.
  3. When using some professional print house methods a minimum print run may still be required, however this will be much smaller than conventional methods of producing books.

Progress to date:

  1. The equipment has been identified. It is either a Model 8x or 15xs binder from Murodigital of Weston-super-Mare (similar machines, but vary in speed, capacity and consequently cost). Details at

Samples have been received and sample publications supplied to the company for binding. Both have been viewed by the PHSG and WW1 project team and by “friendly" professionals and assessed as fit for our purposes. Viewing of these can be arranged by contacting Jonty Wild via or 01462 711383.

  1. From within the PHSG committee (and have not yet been discussed with others!) the following have been identified as possible uses:
bullet The reprint of Memories of Old Joys (Pirton Historic Photograph & Document Archive (Pirton ‘Archive) project).
bullet Collections of articles from the Pirton Magazine (Derek Jarrett).
bullet Reprint of the book on William Dawson (Pirton ‘Archive & Local History Group?).
bullet Publication of individual’s books (for private, family or for general publication) – (Jonty Wild suggestion, he personally knows 4 people who have written books, which they are struggling to put in to print, 3 from Pirton and another in Letchworth).
bullet Publications for fund raising by local clubs or organisations, e.g. a book of pumpkin recipes to raise funds for the Pumpkin Club (Jonty Wild suggestion [Chairman of the Pumpkin Club]).
bullet Local organisation’s minutes, e.g. the Parish Council or other clubs and organisations.
bullet Individuals family trees (Pirton ‘ Archive suggestion)
bullet Book on Pirton’s Pubs (a Pirton ‘Archive long term project)
bullet Publication of “Pirton’s Industries, Customs and Superstitions” (a book currently held by Pirton ‘Archive)

Other Pirton clubs, organisations and individuals are being contacted for more suggested uses and to ask them to register an interest and help with funding. In addition the Curator of the Hitchin Museum has also expressed an interest in using the equipment.

  1. We have begun to seeking funding, which includes raising donations and sponsorship. Forms have been obtained for applying for a Lottery “Awards for All” grant which will be completed as soon the PHSG is able to meet the financial requirements of the Lottery organisation.


Whilst grant applications will be made, we consider it vital that we do not rely solely on that form of funding, for the following reasons:

bullet We wish to be confident that the idea is of genuine interest to the people and organisations of Pirton.
bullet If we can raise a substantial contribution that way, then we believe that will help the Lottery, “Awards for All” officers to view the project with increased confidence and enthusiasm.

We are seeking to raise funds on two fronts:

  1. For the binding equipment – This equipment will be available for use after the Pirton WW1 book has been completed and is one of the fundamental ways that the PHSG can assist other projects, whether undertaken by the PHSG or others.

Consequently we will seek contributions for this from, Pirton organisations and the Lottery “Awards for All” amongst others.

  1. For the Pirton WW1 book – This is a very specific project, being undertaken by the PHSG, however the preferred strategy will rely on the binding equipment, so it would seem reasonable that we also seek direct funding which will enable the project to come to fruition. This will include the consumables necessary to produce the book and to contribute to the binding equipment, without which the project might fail.

Consequently we will seek contributions from individuals, organisations and business sponsorship. We may also seek to raise funds by running events and the sale of Pirton WW1 project related items and of course the sale of the book itself.

If any excess funds are raised by the PHSG these will be held by the PHSG for future projects.

If any excess funds are raised by the WW1 fund raising then we hope, subject to permission, to record the names of the other Pirton men that died and who are not currently recorded on the War Memorial, on the original or another suitable memorial.


Costs Est. – Minimum Requirement   Costs Est. – Ideal Requirement  
Perfect binder 8x £1348.31 Perfect binder 15x £3245.94
Powis Creaser £848.94 Powis Creaser £848.94
A3 Printer £350.00 A3 Printer £350.00
Consumables (Initial Stock) £607.22 Consumables (Initial Stock) £607.22
Second-hand guillotine £50.00 Second-hand guillotine £50.00
Grand Total £3204.47 Grand Total £5102.10

If you wish to help or to discuss any aspect of this please contact one of the PHSG committee members:

Diane Bailey, Tony French, Rosie Hamilton McLeod, Chris Ryan and Jonty Wild or
telephone Jonty Wild on 01462 711383

If you help with fund raising please contact Jonty Wild Email

Pirton History PHSG WW1 Pirton History




This page was last modified on October 10, 2012
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