A new organisation called the East Midlands War Memorials Association has been launched in the region to help care for local war memorials.
The idea behind the Association came from Rupert Matthews MEP who represents the East Midlands in the European Parliament. At the launch event, which took place at Sofleys Restaurant in Market Bosworth, Mr Matthews explained:
“2018 is a very special year as we mark a 100 years since the end of the First World War. We remember all those who have paid the ultimate sacrifice in the service of their country. Throughout the East Midlands there are hundreds of reminders to the fallen. There are war memorials in nearly every town, village and city in region.
“Sadly, however, many are in urgent need of repair or just some general attention. That is why I have come together with fellow enthusiasts to set up the East Midlands War Memorials Association.”
The Association, which is a not-for-profit company limited by share guarantee, has several objectives:
- To fundraise for repair or improvement works to war memorials that need a bit of loving care, working in conjunction with the local community.
- To tell the story of those brave individuals featured on our memorials who died serving their country.
- To work to ensure that all worthy war memorials in the East Midlands are listed by Historic England.
- To create an educational program for schools in the East Midlands where they will be offering lesson plans on the importance of remembrance for Key Stages 1, 2 & 3.
At the launch event, Mr Matthews was joined by Her Grace Frances Duchess of Rutland who is the Association’s Honorary President. She commented:
“I am very pleased to have been asked to help this enterprising campaign. My husband’s favourite charities were always to do with the military and I fully support the Association in its work.”
There were also representatives present from the local community who came to hear more about the work the Association will be doing. Local councillors, representatives from the Royal British Legion, Help for Heroes and the Mayor of Hinckley and Bosworth, Cllr Jan Kirby were all keen to find out more.
The Association will now be visiting several war memorials in the East Midlands and already several requests have come in from local communities around the region who wish to put forward their local war memorial.
To find out more about the campaign, please visit www.eastmidlandswarmemorials.com.