Light­ing marks town’s sac­ri­fice

Leek Post & Times - - FRONT PAGE - By Post & Times re­porters news­desk@the­p­o­stand­

LEEK is pay­ing its re­spects to com­mem­o­rate the cen­te­nary of the end of the First World War by light­ing up the town’s most prom­i­nent build­ing – thanks to a group of vol­un­teers.

The con­cept of do­ing some­thing spe­cial to the Ni­chol­son War Me­mo­rial to mark 100 years since the armistice, was sug­gested by Leek builder John Hayes on the ‘Cheer­ing about Leek’ Face­book page.

A team of vol­un­teers, An­thony ‘Swog’ Beetham, Shaun Beetham, John Povey, Brett Traf­ford, Dave Swar­brook, Ian Smith and Phil Stubbs – all mem­bers of the Friends of Ni­chol­son War Me­mo­rial group – then came up with some pos­si­ble schemes.

Dave Swar­brook con­tacted Leek town coun­cil­lor John Povey who asked for writ­ten pro­pos­als of their ideas. Per­mis­sion for the fi­nal project was granted in mid Oc­to­ber.

Mr Swar­brook said: “We dis­cussed op­tions with the Friends of the Ni­chol­son War Me­mo­rial and they pre­ferred a red poppy as a recog­nised sym­bol of re­mem­brance

“The group had thought of light­ing the whole mon­u­ment red but felt it didn’t seem ap­pro­pri­ate.

“We then worked with Gareth War­riner from the Leek branch of the Bri­tish Le­gion and de­cided to change the clock­face to a poppy.

“Red the­atri­cal gel has been used to al­ter the clock­face light­ing and hand­made mask­ing pro­files give a poppy sil­hou­ette.”

The spe­cial light­ing was switched on at 6pm on Sun­day, Novem­ber 4 and will run to Satur­day, Novem­ber 17.

In a sep­a­rate move, post cards com­mem­o­rat­ing fallen sol­diers from Leek are now be­ing de­liv­ered to their for­mer homes.

The com­mem­o­ra­tive cards, left, are be­ing sent to the for­mer ad­dresses of the 419 sol­diers from the town who per­ished in the First World War a cen­tury ago.

The re­verse side of each card gives de­tails of the fallen sol­dier, in­clud­ing their reg­i­ment, where they died and how old they were.

A let­ter ac­com­pa­ny­ing the post­card, signed by John Povey, Chair­man of Friends of the Ni­chol­son War Me­mo­rial, asks peo­ple liv­ing at those houses to­day to pass on the card to fu­ture res­i­dents of the prop­erty when they move out. The post­cards have been pro­duced by Leek Town Coun­cil in con­junc­tion with the Friends of Ni­chol­son War Me­mo­rial.

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