SUBSTANTIAL funds have finally been secured to allow an assessment to be undertaken to see what work needs to be done to spruce up a village war memorial.
Rick Nuth, chairman of the Tutbury War Memorials Preservation Committee, revealed that a specialist team of architects, surveyors and engineers descended on Tutbury to take a closer look at the memorial based at St Mary’s Priory Church.
The group was there after cash from East Staffordshire Borough Council and the War Memorials Trust paid for them to assess and record what was needed to be done to bring the memorial up to scratch as part of village’s First World War centenary commemoration efforts.
Mr Nuth told the Mail: “The verbal report indicated that the work needed is reasonably extensive, but nonetheless routine, for specialist conservation companies.
“We await the considered written report for the statement of work that will define what needs to be done.
“The statement of work will enable the preservation to be costed, the required funds raised and then a conservation contractor hired, possibly in 2015, to preserve the memorial for future generations. The memorial is currently in poor condition with missing mortar, lichen, failed earlier repairs and a lean – unsurprising after some 94 years in the open.
“We hope that the preservation work will be completed in time for a Rededication Ceremony on July 1, 2016 – the centenary of the first day of the Battle of the Somme.
“Six men from Tutbury died that day and a further nine died during the remainder of that Somme offensive – all 15 are remembered on the memorial.
“While we have a long way to go before the memorial is preserved, we have – at last – started.
“The committee would like to thank the parochial church council of St Mary’s for its help and support.”
More information on the plans is available by heading online to www.tutburywarmemorials.org.uk