Published on 4th August 2014
Local stories and memories can be shared using a new website commemorating the First World War.
Visitors to http://www.ww1cheltenham.org/ can find out about commemorative events happening in the borough over the next four years and use the forum to share with others the stories and thoughts they have about World War One.
The website has been launched to mark the centenary of the UK’s declaration of war, on Monday 4 August. Other plans include the restoration of the war memorial and the installation of paving stones naming three Cheltenham born men who earned the Victoria Cross in the Great War.
Hannah Wright, strategy and engagement assistant said: “With all the Cheltenham events collated on this website, people can easily find out what is happening in the borough and how they can pay their respects. We’ve also set up Facebook and Twitter pages, so we hope people will share and re-tweet information to provoke interest in amongst the Cheltenham community.”
Cllr Rowena Hay, cabinet member for healthy lifestyles, said: “The people who fought and lived through the war were our parents and grandparents, so for many people, the next four years of commemorations will be an emotive time. We hope the website will encourage people to learn about Cheltenham during the war and to share their own, valuable and humbling family stories or research.”
See the dedicated Facebook page www.facebook.com/ww1cheltenham and follow us on Twitter using @WW1Cheltenham.
For press enquiries contact Lisa Davies, communications and web team leader, on 01242 775037 or [email protected]
The restoration of the war memorial marks the centenary of the First World War and the first stage will be completed by 5 September, in time for Battle of Britain Day on 21 September and Remembrance Sunday. Phase one of the restoration will involve the repaving of the memorial in York stone, cleaning and immediate repairs of the balustrades. There will also be improvements to drainage systems and there will be new LED lighting fitted around the memorial. In order to secure the site whilst work is underway, hoardings will be placed around the memorial.
Cheltenham Borough Council is currently planning a phase two restoration project, to be carried out over a longer period, which would involve the restoring all the names on the memorial, refurbishing the old garden lanterns, cleaning the existing metal plaques and providing a visitor board and information app for educational purposes.