Thursday, 10 July 2008

Councillor Chris Beverley welcomes improvements to war memorial

Councillor Chris Beverley has welcomed the improvements that have been made to the war memorial in Scatcherd Park.

Councillor Beverley, who attended the rededication service on Sunday, said: ‘I spoke in favour of this when the issue was initially brought to the Outer South Area Committee and I am delighted that Leeds City Council has now funded these improvements, which have certainly enhanced our most prominent local monument to those who have given their lives for this country.’

The following description was read out at the original unveiling of the Memorial in 1927, and was re-read at the rededication ceremony:

The Monument Described

The idea of the Memorial is to strike a dignified, impressive and solemn note, in view of the sacrifices of the immortal dead, to remove from our thoughts the undue emphasis we are apt to give to materialistic ideals.

Britannia the mother of us all, born as we are out of the sea, holds her trident aloft in salute to the bravery of her sons. She is seen at the head of the columns of her sons, who are marshalled in the ranks of undying fame behind and to the right and left of her.

It should not be difficult, for those akin in flesh and spirit, to those who have given their lives, to visualise and see the ranks of their loved ones marshalled behind Britannia instead of the cold bronze and granite, our only means of expressing the spiritual.

Britannia stands on her shield since the fight is over – the shield is supported on the heads of four lions, alert and prepared – the symbol of England.

The dedication inscriptions –

(On the centre monument)
“ Remember the men of this Borough of Morley who, seeking
the welfare of their Country, gave their lives in the Great War
and now resting in and beyond the seas 1914-1918.”

(On the left wall)
“They were a wall unto us both by night and by day.”

(On the right wall)
“At the going down of the sun and in the morning we will
Remember them.”

-are a perpetual cry of love from the heart to those who have passed over, more endurable than flowers, and expressing immeasurable pride in their achievement and gratitude as eternal as time.

The memorial, of granite and bronze, is about twenty-two feet high and fifty feel wide.

The memorial has been designed and carried out by Mr Walter Gilbert. His conception of a memorial to give expression to the gratitude of the borough was selected on open competition by the War Memorial Committee.