War memorial to be improved

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THE war memorial in Skegness will be refurbished or replaced in time for the World War One centenary in 2014, town councillors have agreed.

Coun Mark Smith raised the motion at Wednesday’s Skegness Town Council meeting and received emphatic support from his fellow councillors, who felt it a fitting way of honouring the town’s fallen soldiers.

Coun Dick Edgington said: “I think this is one of the most important things to have come before this council.

“The carnage of that event is difficult to comprehend all these years later but in many ways we are still feeling its effects.”

As well as restoring or replacing the existing memorial outside St Matthew’s Church, the names of several soldiers only recently identified as having been from Skegness will also be added to their rightful place.

Coun Steve Kirk, who said he had visited the war graves in Flanders on several occasions where ‘even the biggest man in the world would start to weep’ felt the motion would be unanimously popular among councillors and the public.

“I don’t think there’s any debate on this - we could never get any flak for not remembering this town’s dead,” he said.

And the Mayor of Skegness Coun Mark Anderson highlighted its significance in the present time by remarking on the conflicts involving British forces which still rage today.

Coun Neil Cooper explained that Burgh le Marsh Town Council had recently refurbished its war memorial at the cost of £7,000 and therefore felt Skegness Town Council could benefit from the contacts and procedures already followed by their neighbouring town.

Reverend Ian Banks shared the councillors’ enthusiasm for the project. He said: “I would commend anyone to support such a scheme in anyway possible. It’s important we as a town feel that we own the facility - it’s not just a church, it’s the community’s place.”

The council will now investigate fund raising ideas to pay for the project.