ESTHER Clark’s research into the life and times of her great grandfather, Sanny Sloan, discovered that four of his brothers died in the war.

Sanny, a firebrand Socialist who became known as The Miners’ MP, fought for justice and better conditions his entire adult life.

He was one of only eight MPs to vote against the war and was a pacifist.

Two of his brothers had emigrated to Canada to find a better life but still signed up to fight in the war, as Esther discovered.

She said: “As 25 per cent As 25% of Scottish miners volunteered in the 1st World War, the centenary seemed a good place to start my research.

“Sanny himself could not have fought as he had lost the sight of one eye in a mining accident when he was just 12-years-old.

“He was one of a family of 12 and four of his younger brothers, aged between 19 and 33, died in World War I while his nephew died in the Second World War.

“Three of his brothers, William, Robert and Charles, had emigrated to Canada and signed up over there. William and Charles were killed in action and Robert died of chlorine poisoning.

“Thomas was killed in action in the Somme while Donald met his fate similarly in Arras, France.

“There were a few months between their deaths but the telegrams were delivered on the same day.

“It had a devastating effect on their mum and her hair turned prematurely white.”

During the course of her research, Esther tried to obtain copies of her great-uncles’ death certificates but they do not exist.

There were so many casualties and soldiers missing and presumed dead, that their details were released in a lengthy list of names.

More heartache was to visit the family in World War II when Charles’ son, Thomas, was killed in action while serving with the Royal Canadian Artillery.