The country and the world marks the centenary of the Armistice ending World War One on Sunday November 11th 2018. Hedon will be one of those places that will join in with the national lighting of beacons in the evening at around 7pm which will complement the Remembrance Parades traditionally held earlier during the day.
Hedon Town Council set up a working group in April to look at how the evening event might be extended. One of the ideas was to explore the possibility of erecting a permanent memorial in the town based on the well-known silent soldier silhouettes.
That council working group has now morphed into a formal Hedon Armistice Centenary War Memorial group. They have made a scale but wooden replica version of the memorial in order to gauge what it would look like when in situ at the preferred location. The memorial, to be eventually placed on the mound alongside Jubilee Gardens on Farrand Road/New Road, depicts a kneeling soldier in silhouette, it will be made of weathered steel atop a granite plinth and will cut a striking image to all those entering the town from Hull Road.
The beautiful memorial design has been created by Hedon town councillor Terry West who explained that the image of the kneeling soldier in front of poppies, with his rifle in a neutral position, represents the soldier giving thanks for the end of war. It will be shaped from 15mm Corten steel which will give the memorial a natural weatherproofing and rusted look.
The Hedon Armistice Centenary War Memorial group, comprising Hedon Town Council, Hedon & District Churches Together, the Royal British Legion, Hedon Women’s Institute, Hedon Museum, Hedon Mixed Voice Choir and both Hedon and Inmans Primary schools, will actually reveal the memorial not at its final location, but instead at Market Hill as part of a special centenary celebration of the end of The Great War which will take place on Sunday, November 11th. The evening event will see the lighting of the Hedon Beacon, a playing of the last post on bugle, poetry readings and community singing of songs from the war with Hedon’s Mixed Voice Choir, school choirs, and a special choir of councillors and ex-councillors all taking part. But the highlight of the event will be the revealing of the new war memorial… at least that is what is hoped for.
A public appeal has been launched to help pay for the new war memorial which is expected to cost around £5,400. This is deemed to be an important new feature for the town reflecting public interest in marking the Armistice and the end of World War 1. And of course there is added value in it being paid for by public subscription; acquiring it through the donated pounds and pennies of Hedon residents current and past, will help generate a real sense of pride and community ownership of the memorial in the town. It will be very much a peoples’ memorial.
Lots of small scale funding activities have already begun including a first public collection at the summer concert of Hedon Mixed Voice Choir last Friday, and collections will be taking place at Hedfest on Saturday.