Work starts to upgrade Melton war memorial

Historian Trevor Hearn (left) and Town Estate feoffee John Southerington at Melton's War Memorial EMN-150522-173712001
Historian Trevor Hearn (left) and Town Estate feoffee John Southerington at Melton's War Memorial EMN-150522-173712001
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Work has started to upgrade Melton’s war memorial as a final appeal is sounded to raise the remaining money required for the scheme.

Ornamental railings have been installed in the gardens of Egerton Lodge in front of the plaques which list the town’s fallen service personnel in conflicts over the last century.

Interpretation boards with photographs of those killed and information about their life and service are to be erected to keep their memory alive for future generations and as an educational resource.

Melton Town Estate received a Heritage Lottery Fund grant of £9,800 towards the work and the Melton Times launched an appeal to help raise the remainder - £2,635 has so far been contributed and another £1,300 is needed.

Town estate feoffee John Southerington, who is co-ordinating the project, said: “The railings that have gone in are restoring what was there 100 years ago, when the ironwork was probably removed for the war effort.

“It gives a real emphasis to the war memorial and makes it more of a special area within the park.

“The interpretation boards are still being put together using the photographs and information which have appeared in the Melton Times since the end of last year.

“People in Melton have been very generous already but we just need this last bit of money so we can finish off the work.”

Since the appeal for the extra cash was started in November, a number of fallen servicemen whose names are not on the memorial have been discovered.

It is thought this is because familiies did not come forward at the time to tell the authorities or the Melton Times because they were in mourning or because they did not have sufficient literacy to write letters to inform them.

Mr Southerington added: “We now have over 400 names for those killed in the First World War, compared to the 245 who are listed on the stone plaques at the moment.

“We are still carrying out research so we include everyone. It could be that some town serviceman could have enlisted in surrounding villages but they should stil be included on the memorial, of course.”

l To make a donation to our appeal at the Melton Mowbray Building Society in Nottingham Street - quote the account number GGX3326893MEL and make cheques payable to Melton Mowbray Town Estate (War Memorial) appeal if you would like to give some money.

l If you have a photograph and details of a family member killed in the world wars email the pictures and information to nick.rennie@jpress.co.uk or bring it to the Melton Times office in Nottingham Street during normal office hours (9am to 5pm). Contact Nick on (01664) 412523.