HUNGARY has given thanks to a Herefordshire village in a moving service.

Hungarian officials travelled to Titley for the unveiling of a plaque in memory of General Lazar Meszaros, a 19th century national hero whose grave in the village churchyard was lovingly tended until his remains were exhumed in 1991 and returned to his homeland.

Vicar of St Peter's Church, the Rev Ben Griffith, conducted a dedication of the memorial, flanked by Brigadier General Erno Barath, Professor Dr Robert Hermann and Colonel Viktor Makay.

The plaque was unveiled by Christine Winstone who tended the grave of General Meszaros for many years. Standing by were two men wearing the distinctive gold braided uniform of the Hungarian Hussars. Vice Lord-Lieutenant of Herefordshire, Christopher James was also present.

General Meszaros was supreme army commander and minister of national defence in the first independent Hungarian government, and was in exile when he died in 1858 while a guest of the Countess of Oxford at the former Eywood mansion in Titley.

Churchwarden Dick Allford said the unveiling had been an historic day for Titley.

The ceremony was followed by lunch at the village hall.

"We all had Hungarian goulash, Hungarian specialist cakes and Hungarian wine."

Councillor Roger Phillips said: "There will always be a special relationship between Titley and Hungary."