• Jessica Wall showed a photo of the original cross erected to the memory of Arthur Orchard when she visited his grave in Belgium.

An image of a simple wooden cross erected in memory of Bombardier Arthur William Orchard were among the photos and records presented by Jessica Wall when she visited the World War One soldier's headstone at Dickebusch New Military Cemetery, Belgium.

Jessica, a student of Scotch Oakburn College, in Launceston, Tasmania, decided to research Arthur William Orchard when she was chosen to visit France and Belgium for the Frank MacDonald Study Tour in 2014.

Arthur Orchard was a 19-year-old clerk from Launceston who enlisted on 17 March 1915 and served in the Middle East, France and Belgium.   He was awarded the Military Medal on 23 June 1916. 

Major-General William Holmes, Commanding 4th Division, 14 June 1917, wrote the following of Bombardier Orchard:

  • "During operations before Messines on the 7th/8th June 1917, Bombardier Orchard was in charge of the Specialists with Forward Observation Officer for Group Headquarters, and set a fine example for his pluck and determination.
    He was for many hours under heavy shell fire."

Bombardier Arthur William Orchard died of wounds on 15 July 1917. 

Find out more about Bombardier Arthur Orchard MM at the Australian War Memorial and the National Archives of Australia.

< Soldiers researched for the Frank MacDonald Memorial Prize