A SERVICE near Hook commemorated the lives of six soldiers who died trying to defuse a bomb during the Second World War.

A small crowd attended the service last Sunday at a plaque which is 100 yards from the site of the explosion, by the railway bridge in Crown Lane, Nately Scures.

The memorial event was organised by members of the 25th Royal Engineers Bomb Disposal Group, a Second World War re-enactment group.

The six soldiers – driver Fred Gavid, 22, and sappers Arthur Hill, 20, Ralph Moxon, 21, Douglas Vince, 23, Fred Warner, 23 and Arthur White, 23 – died on August 18, 1940.

The men, who were members of the 6th section of the 48th Bomb Disposal Company Royal Engineers, died when the bomb they were trying to remove exploded.

The Reverend Jane Leese, vicar for the Newnham parish, led the service, which included the sounding of The Last Post and a minute’s silence.

Those attending included Basingstoke MP Maria Miller, Odiham county councillor Jonathan Glen, and relatives of Sapper Vince, who came from Frome, in Somerset, for the ceremony.

Organiser Mike Authers said the deaths were commemorated three months early so as not to clash with centenary events for the First World War.

He said: “It was quite an emotional event.

“The minute’s silence was the most amazing bit because there was not a sound.”