Town memorial completed

At the interpretation boards (L-R) Councillor Bev Murray, Gareth Kellett, Jamie Dixon, John Garwood and Lindsay Hoyle

At the interpretation boards (L-R) Councillor Bev Murray, Gareth Kellett, Jamie Dixon, John Garwood and Lindsay Hoyle

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Work on a town centre memorial has been completed.

Fencing surrounding the Chorley Pals statue near the Flat Iron car park has now been taken down after work surrounding the landmark was finished.

The memorial has been fenced off for a number of weeks for a makeover as part of the wider Chorley Remember project.

This included installing benches and new paths.

Chairman and co-founder of the Chorley Pals Memorial, Lindsay Hoyle MP, said the work, which has been led by the Chorley Pals Memorial charity and supported by Chorley Council, with funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund, has transformed the area, and made the statue a focal point for visitors in the town centre.

He said: “The Pals Memorial has been a popular place for people to come and visit ever since it was unveiled in February 2010.

“We decided that more needed to be done to open it up to make it easier for people to come and see it from all sides.

“We also wanted to make it a place where people can sit down and enjoy the surroundings.

“It looks brilliant now it is finished and judging by the feedback we’ve had from people during the improvement works it will be a credit to the town and enhance the memorial to the Chorley Pals.”

The improvement works, done in partnership with Liberata, includes new and wider paths with access from all sides, lawns and low level hedges bordering the pathways.

There is also a number of benches as well as interpretation boards giving a bit of the history behind the Chorley Pals and the story of how the memorial came about.

Coun Bev Murray, who has overseen Chorley Council’s involvement in the project, said: “It’s great to see the dedication of the Chorley Pals Memorial group in recognising those who sacrificed so much in The Great War.

“The area around the statue is now much improved.

“The council was more than happy to donate the land for the work to take place and our staff have been actively involved in preparing the site before the improvements were made.”

Members of the public were able to enjoy the area after the fencing was taken down on Thursday.

The statue is part of the wider work of the Chorley Remembers project, which will see work start on enhancing the cenotaph in Astley Park in the coming weeks, including adding the names of 727 men from the town who died in the service of their country.