A historian wants to ensure Britain’s “forgotten army” is remembered during the centenary commemorations of the First World War.
As the country prepares to mark the 100th anniversary of the start of the Great War next year, former lecturer Dr Bill Roberts is researching the British Indian Army.
Dr Roberts, of Huddersfield Local History Society, said the contribution of soldiers from India and Pakistan had been enormous.
Some 1.3 million Muslims, Sikhs and Hindus volunteered to fight for Britain.
Now Dr Roberts, a former lecturer at the University of Huddersfield, wants to hear from Kirklees families whose ancestors joined the British Indian Army.
“The British Indian Army has been very largely forgotten about but there will be many local families for whom this is part of their ancestry,” he said.
“The British Indian Army recruited heavily in Punjab and there is still a military heritage among Sikhs in particular.
“The British Indian Army fought alongside British troops on the Western Front and in Gallipoli and Iraq.”
Some 60,000 men were killed and 67,000 wounded. Twelve Indian soldiers earned the Victoria Cross.
Dr Roberts wants to hear from local families with relatives who served on the frontline.
He has been supported in his appeal by the Kirklees Faith Network.
Spokesman Waseem Riaz said the British Indian soldiers were all volunteers and it was important to remember their contribution and sacrifice.
He added: “We urge any local Muslim, Sikh or Hindu families to make contact with Dr Roberts if they are in a position to provide old photos, letters or medals, as well as other forms of memorabilia, for next year’s centenary.
“The sacrifices need to be remembered.”
Anyone with information to share can email Dr Roberts on email@example.com