LAST PUSH TO HONOUR WAR DEAD
ACAMPAIGNER is making a final push in his drive to honour the war dead.
Taxi driver Jim Watson pledged to create a memorial for the area he has lived in all his life.
Now his plans are coming to fruition –with just £3,000 left to raise.
A CAMPAIGN to honour Dennistoun’s war dead with a permanent memorial must still raise £3000.
As told in the Evening Times in March, taxi driver Jim Watson pledged to create a memorial for the area he has lived in all his life.
Now his plans are coming to fruition – with a final push for the last of the funding.
Jim said: “It has been amazing how people have got behind the idea.
“Almost every penny so far has come from the local community and that’s what I wanted, a local memorial paid for by local people.
“It is fantastic and we are getting there – we just need this final bit of money.”
The memorial, which will sit in Alexandra Park, will cost £10,000 in total.
Jim said city businesses have been a great help with AS Scaffolding, Bluevale Structures and Tennent’s all contributing.
Parkhead Welding has also offered to donate the fence.
Jim, a former Territorial Army solider, was inspired after seeing a war memorial outside HMP Barlinnie for wardens killed in the First World War trenches.
He is hoping the memorial will be ready for unveiling in 2018 to mark the 100th anniversary of the ceasefire.
The 49-year-old wants to organise a grand unveiling, with a notable person launching the memorial and a parade through Dennistoun.
Support for the endeavour has been given by social landlord Milnbank Housing Association and councillor Elaine McDougall.
Jim has also encouraged local schools to get involved, with St Denis’, Golfhill and Alexandra Parade primaries and Whitehill Secondary pupils all entering a competition to design the memorial.
A winner has been chosen but not yet told, and Jim is keeping the name under his hat until schools go back.
An architect has also been appointed to fully plan the memorial, which will also honour those fallen in subsequent conflicts.
Jim has also been researching Dennistoun’s part in the First World War and has found, after painstakingly going through the records, that 874 men from the area died in the conflict.
His list is now archived in the Mitchell Library.
Jim said: “I have spent every spare minute on this. If you laid all those men head to foot they would stretch from Tennent’s all along Duke Street. You can’t imagine that kind of loss and it should be honoured.”
To donate see www.gofundme .com/ dennistoun-war-memorial
Above, May Hutchinson and Jim Watson of Dennistoun War Memorial Committee, local councillor Elaine McDougall and Linda Sichi of Milbank Housing Association
Left, Jim wants honour men like James Lawrie, from Dennistoun, who was 20 when he was killed at the Somme in 1916