Great War 100 years on

jpco-14-11-12 Remembrance Sunday 2012 (Pic by Jon Rigby)
jpco-14-11-12 Remembrance Sunday 2012 (Pic by Jon Rigby)

With only one year to go until the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of World War One, arrangements are being made to commemorate the date.

Members of Crawley Borough Council have formed a partnership with representatives of the Armed Forces to decide how best the town could honour the fallen.

At the end of June, the council signed a Community Covenant on Armed Forces Day to encourage people to show their support for our men and women in uniform.

Cllr Geraint Thomas (Lab, Northgate) submitted a suggestion to the council’s Overview and Scrutiny Committee asking for consideration to be given to how the anniversary could be marked.

He suggested a plaque be placed at the Marks & Spencer exit of the Memorial Gardens in memory of the men who had died during most recent conflicts such as the Falklands or Afghanistan.

His idea was echoed by Cllr Sally Blake (Con, Pound Hill North) who said: “I would like to see a replica of the Memorial Garden gates.

“We really don’t want to repeat the names but there were four men from the First World War who were left off because they died of their wounds after the event so I’d like to see those reinstated and any of the names from wars since then added.”

Cllr Howard Bloom (Con, Southgate), Cabinet member for community engagement is due to meet with representatives of the Armed Forces in September to discuss the matter.

He said: “We certainly will bring this up to the partnership because we’re very keen for something to be done in this area.”

Crawley residents have been sharing their ideas on the Observer’s Facebook page.

Joseph Tiberius Wood suggested: “In the Memorial Gardens grow a poppy field or do a field of remembrance like they do at Westminster.”

Julie Sadler said: “A day in the Memorial Gardens with a service of rememberence followed by a day of fundraisng and fun run by all the cadets as they are our heroes-to-be and all the proceeds to go to the families of war heroes.”

Andy James Turner added: “I lost my great uncle Olivier, 13-10-1915, at the battle of Loos. He was 17. I have some letters and poetry that he wrote and sent home. I’m still unsure what that war was really for.”