Friday, December 11, 2009

Memorial Garden Plans

Egglescliffe war memorial, built with public subscriptions to commemorate those who died fighting in the world wars, was refurbished and brought back to a fitting state a few years ago by the Parish Council. Since then efforts have concentrated on the land next to it. This was originally bought in order to provide a memorial garden but then turned into an allotment. Some years ago it was brought back to open space but the other works weren't done because funding wasn't available. In recent years the council has been brave enough to ask the residents for a little extra on their council tax and no-one has complained to us. As a result we now have the funds to go ahead and finish off the garden, over 50 years after it was first conceived.
A path beside the memorial will allow a little more hard surface to stand on for Remembrance Sunday and will also provide a way to go dryshod to the fence and enjoy the wonderful view. At the end of the path we hope to have a stone plinth with an interpretive board giving a brief history of the memorial and garden and pointing out the direction of Northern France & Belgium where many of those named lost their lives. A further bench donated in memory of someone who loved this area, some paving round the benches to allow their use in wet as well as dry conditions, planting of low shrubs will all contribute to a worthy memorial
Today that dream moved a step nearer when the recreation committee met on site with Stockton Council's urban design manager in order to talk about any possible issues before submitting the planning application. With good luck we should have all the works completed in time to be enjoyed as a tranquil seating area in summer and a fitting memorial to those of the parish who gave their lives for their country.
A rather better way to spend an hour than worrying about political point scoring. This is really making a difference to something which local people want and have paid for out of their own taxation. Local decisions about local expenditure - real democracy.

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