New memorial has made us very proud

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ORGANISERS of a memorial project in Chorley say they have been delighted by the feedback from people as far away as Leicester and Birkenhead.

The work to revamp the memorial was a joint initiative by Chorley Remembers and Chorley Council, with support from the Heritage Lottery fund.

Officials say it was a fitting tribute for the 734 servicemen who died during conflicts.

Project manager Steve Williams said: “On Remembrance Sunday, we estimated 2,500 people were attended the service in the park.

“There were a number of relatives of people who had died in the First and Second World Wars, and they came up to us after the event.

“They were very moved by the new memorial and made that known to us.

“It was extremely gratifying that they spent time looking at the memorial.

“We felt that we needed to do it because it was 90 years on from the First World War, and still there was not a real memorial in Astley Park.

“It is great to get such positive feedback about the memorial.

“We are quite lucky because there are no other such memorials in the big towns such as Bolton and Blackburn.”

Mr Williams admitted workers were still carrying right up to the last minute last Thursday and Friday – ahead of a special service for local school children.

“We had a problem when two of the panels with the names on got cracked.

“It put us a few days behind but the contractors managed to make the time up.”

Chairman and co-founder of the Chorley Remembers Project Lindsay Hoyle said: “It was a very special occasion with so many people taking part in the remembrance service at the war memorial.The work has been done to an extremely high standard.

“The memorial is a most fitting tribute to those who have gone before us.

“If you haven’t visited the memorial for some time, I would urge people to go along and take time to read the names of all the fallen.”

The improvement work has also seen a general refurbishment of the area, close to the Park Road entrance, with the other memorial stones repositioned into more prominent locations and a platform for people leading services at the memorial.

The organisers will be having a dedication service in Spring next year and they are looking for a permanent Remembrance project in Astley Hall.

They are just waiting for the go-ahead by council staff for the facility at the coachhouse.

Tell us what you think of the memorial online at chorleyguardian.co.uk or email robert.kelly@lep.co.uk