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HRH The Princess Royal and Townwomen’s Guilds to honour victims of war at new memorial

Click to download press release (.zip)

This autumn will see the creation of a new memorial at the National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire, dedicated to those who have died or suffered as a result of war. Townswomen’s Guilds patron, HRH The Princess Royal and members of the popular women’s organisation will attend the Service of Dedication taking place on 5th October 2017.

The memorial sculpture at the centre of the event was funded by TG members, who raised over £15,000 through coffee mornings, along with some more imaginative initiatives including ‘Eat Smarties and Fill The Tubes with Cash’.

“So many of our members responded enthusiastically to this project,” explained Jenny Rideout, TG National Chairman. “As mothers, wives and daughters, Townswomen have been affected by conflict through the ages. Our memorial is in remembrance of parents, spouses and children who have died or been wounded whilst on active service in conflicts worldwide. The memorial will also commemorate those civilians who have died or suffered as a result of conflict.

“The project has its genesis in 2015, and TG’s involvement with World War 1 commemorations. We were delighted to be invited to become involved with the National Memorial Arboretum, alongside so many other prominent national organisations.

 “Our members are familiar with local memorials in towns and villages across the UK, but the idea of a TG memorial at the National Memorial Arboretum really caught their imagination.”

One such member is Beverly Oliver, who will be remembering her grandmother, whose life spanned many conflicts, including two world wars. Beverly wrote to the TG appeal: “My Guild made a contribution to the National Memorial Arboretum appeal but I am sending another donation on behalf of my late grandmother. As a child, she was a mill worker in Southport. Although she lived into her late nineties, she never had money of her own and her life like so many women was severely restricted... Her generation would not believe how far women have progressed since their day.”

Officially opened in 2001, The National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire has 150 acres of woodland and almost 30,000 trees, with more added each year. There are over 350 memorials for both the armed forces and civilian organisations. Designed and constructed by Allan Cannell, the Townswomen’s Guilds’ memorial will take its place among those associated with other significant UK institutions, including the Salvation Army and the Women’s Institute.

Townswomen’s Guilds is one of the largest women’s organisations in the UK. With around 600 Guilds and 24,000 members, it is experiencing something of a renaissance through a ‘new generation’ of members, attracted by the events, friendship, crafts and campaigning on social issues offered collectively and by individual Guilds around the country.

Read more here:
Feature – TG's inspiration for a national memorial to the victims of war

Click to download press release (.zip)

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