ORGANISERS of the Hallsands centenary commemorations are hoping to track down descendants of those who lived in the old village.

In January, there will be poignant centenary commemorations of the great storm that destroyed Hallsands.

The old village of Hallsands stood beneath the cliffs, just over a mile north of Start Point, but in intense storms almost one hundred years ago, most of the village was destroyed.

Little is left of the old village - two buildings, used as holiday homes stand precariously perched on a rock platform a few metres above the sea, otherwise only ruins of what was once a thriving fishing village remain.

In the book, ‘Hallsands - a pictorial history’ by Kathy Tanner and Peter Walsh, there’s a map showing the recession of the old coastline at Hallsands.

It also includes the occupancy of houses in 1915, two years before the great storm. The families identified as living in village at the time are named as Barber, Crocker, Stone, Patey, Prettijohn, Login, Lynn, Trout, Mingo, Mitchell and Steer. Other houses identified include the London Inn and stables, the Mission Room and the Post Office.

It is thought that many direct descendants still live in the South Hams, although it is known that the Hallsands diaspora spread across the globe, with some families travelling up to Bristol and then on to the United States of America.

Tim Lynn, whose grandfather lived in the old village, said: ‘We want to keep the memory of the old village alive. The centenary should be marked, and we want all the families to come along and to make a big mark of respect for all those who lost their homes. In those days they didn’t get any help. They lost their homes and that was it.’

Jonathan Hale, whose great, great uncle was landlord of the London Inn said: ‘January is perhaps not the best time of year to commemorate an anniversary, but winter is when storms happen. Nevertheless we are keen to pay tribute to our forebears with a torchlight procession along the route they took to safety.’

In January 2017, descendants of those who lost their homes will mark the centenary of the storm with a series of events including the unveiling of a commemorative plaque, an exhibition of pictures of the old village, a torchlight procession and a church service followed by a crab supper.

The organisers of the commemoration are appealing for families to get in touch with Tim Lynn, and for those who know of families who have moved further afield to pass the message on.

Tim can be reached by telephone on 01548 511502 or 07773 037605.