Hopes rise the ‘forgotten’ can be remembered

FUNDS are being raised to remember about 300 ‘forgotten’ Stalybridge soldiers with an extension of the town’s war memorial.

Estimates say it will cost about £140,000 to properly mark what servicemen did for the country during wartime.

But the Friends of Stalybridge War Memorial group believes the target can be reached.

Stalybridge war memorial

After more research by local historian Kate Booth, names of men born in Stalybridge who were killed on the front line were gathered together.

And as the town and others in Tameside prepare to honour the fallen on Armistice Day and Remembrance Sunday, it is hoped more names will be added.

“Adding the names would mean an extension to the war memorial, which is a Grade II listed building,” explained Frank Harrop, of the Friends of Stalybridge War Memorial group.

“It’s not just a case of chiselling the names in, there’s a lot of bureaucracy around it.“We can’t get money from the National Lottery because the extension would be classed as a new build, we can’t really get anything from heritage organisations either.

“It’s been a case of starting from scratch. We couldn’t get any grants.”

A roll of honour currently exists in Stalybridge Library, after it was moved from the Civic Hall.

But efforts to raise money for a formal memorial include the Marshall’s Walk and there is also a ‘Book Nook’ at Florence and Amelia’s in Armentieres Square, with all donations going to the appeal.

And Frank, who started his research into soldiers in 2014, assisted by historian Kate, whose own work started after realising her grandfather is not named, detailed the plans if the target is raised.

He added: “I’ve started to research those who died in World War II and I’ve found about 20 names.

We’d need to add the 300 from World War I, any from World War II and any from conflicts since the end of that, plus space for anyone killed in any future conflicts.

“There’s a couple of lads, in particular Sean Dawson from Carrbrook, who aren’t on. Sean’s on the Ashton memorial but not the Stalybridge one.

“Next to the current memorial, there’s a path that led to what was a clinic. If we get the money, the names would go on stones laid along that, keeping the curve of what’s there now going.

“They would be carved in new stones but in the same type of text as what’s on the memorial now, to try and simulate the design.

“Everything is organised and drawn up – we just haven’t got the £140,000 to pay for it.”


DONATE: https://www.gofundme.com/f/stalybridge-war-memorial-extension-appeal?fbclid=IwAR2E5mahIr_iKORLrG0E2FABZvjCZsJS5sj1tLi3iZdQTbF-zE_85UCWRv0

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