Historian and author Richard Broadhead is campaigning to get better recognition of Calne’s forgotten war hero Geoffrey Rumming.

Chief Petty Officer Rumming, 29, an air mechanic with the Royal Naval Air Force, was providing cover for the doomed landing forces in Gallipoli in 1915 which eventually led to around 450,000 Commonwealth casualties.

On April 24, 1915, Petty Officer Rumming was providing cover when the landing forces came under heavy fire.

He and four colleagues heard the cries of the wounded on a far beach and made repeated trips, still under fire, to bring them back to safety.

He was considered for the Victoria Cross, but was eventually given the Conspicuous Gallantry medal and a French medal.

About three months later he was shot in the head and was sent home to be treated in London.

The wound caused him to develop epilepsy and he was discharged from the Army.

Nevertheless, in 1916 Petty Officer Rumming again signed up for the Army but before he could see active duty his epilepsy returned.

He was operated up and returned to Quemerford where his parents owned the mill, but his condition deteriorated once more and he died and was buried in Curzon Street Cemetery.

Mr Broadhead, who lives in Hilmarton, said: “We have our own real war hero buried locally and I think it’s important to remember him.

“I think school children should be going to see the graves here.

“There’s no need to go to France or Belgium when this is on our doorstep.”

Mr Broadhead, who is the author of several books on local soldiers who fought in the First World War, said: “His family line seems to have died out, and so they are not here to remember him.

“I think that’s very sad, and I want him to be remembered by others.

“When people look at war memorials now, they only think of the names there, but they don’t mean anything any more.

“But every name on those memorials has a story, and if people can think of those, it means these men are being remembered.”

Mr Broadhead’s latest book The Great War: Chippenham Soldiers will be published in November.