A NEW commemorative walk has been opened in remembrance of a Herefordshire soldier who lost his life in the First World War.

The walk is one of 13 created by the Eardisland Memorial Walks project, each commemorating one of the 13 fallen soldiers whose names are inscribed on Eardisland’s War Memorial.

Private Stanley George Hughes, of the 2nd Battalion Royal Irish Fusiliers, died on the Macedonian front aged just 20, on July 23, 1917.

The son of George and Sarah Hughes of Little Broome Cottage, Eardisland, Pte Hughes signed up to the Royal Horse Artillery early in the war.

Later transferring to the Royal Irish Fusiliers, he was posted to C Company of the 2nd Battalion, deployed to Macedonia in October 1915 as part of the British Salonika Force.

Sent against military advice to assist the Serbs in the face of mounting attacks from the Central Powers, the intervention came too late and a brief winter campaign on the Serbian frontier was blighted by severe weather conditions.

British troops resumed offensive operations in 1916, but they were soon to be pitted against an enemy that could not be constrained by fortifications.

Malaria proved to be a serious drain on manpower during the campaign, with British forces suffering around 160,000 cases of the disease.

Pte Hughes was one of those struck down with the illness, from which he sadly never recovered. He lies in a Commonwealth war grave at Lahana Military Cemetery in Greece.

The five-mile circular walk was officially opened by a veteran of the Royal Irish Regiment, who unveiled the gate and commemorative plaque donated to the project by the Royal Irish Regiments Association.

Visit www.eardislandmemorialwalks.org.uk for more information about the project.