UPDATE FEBRUARY 2015: the council have granted us planning permission for a memorial but we have yet to obtain the funding we would need to go ahead. We'll bring you more news of what we are planning and how you can help us, as soon as we have it.

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An important part of the World War 1 Belgian refugee project is the proposal to commission a permanent memorial to this episode in local history.

M. Pelabon (front row, 2nd from right) and his workers outside the building that became the Ice Rink

photo © the Royal Museum of the Army and Military History, Brussels

After the war, our Belgian Refugees were all but forgotten. We think they should now be remembered with a memorial in the Warren Gardens, the riverside park between the Thames and the Richmond Bridge Estate, just outside the old Pelabon site.

M. Pelabon on the riverside just outside the munitions factory

photo © the Royal Museum of the Army and Military History, Brussels

We want the memorial to be a work of art in itself. We are thinking of a simple menhir (ie a natural shaped stone), 5-6 ft high, with an inscription carved as the main artistic feature. Here's what a menhir looks like

and here's an example of decorative stone carving of an inscription to show you how a simple message can be a work of art.

We hope to involve school-children to devise the short message and to involve Belgian stoneworkers in the artistic process.

Please help us by completing a simple questionnaire and by becoming a member of the East Twickenham Centennial Group. This costs you absolutely nothing in time or money (unless you would like it to. All offers of help and donations gratefully received!). But it does mean we can point to your support in seeking funding.

Download the membership form from here. Email it back to etwickvill@hotmail.com or post it to Helen Baker, ETCG, 2 Balmoral Mansions, Clevedon Road, East Twickenham TW1 2HZ

 

 

 

25 June 2014