Sutton war graves given a spring clean

WHILE those who gave their lives fighting in wars for Britain are remembered, individual graves can sometimes get forgotten or neglected.

Sutton-in-Ashfield Rotary Club made a special effort to put this right yesterday by organising a clean up of some of the war graves located at St MaryMagdalene Church in Sutton.

Members of the Sutton Rotary and Inner Wheel Clubs pictured in Sutton Cemetery where they took part in a War Graves clean-up.

Members of the Sutton Rotary and Inner Wheel Clubs pictured in Sutton Cemetery where they took part in a War Graves clean-up.

Rotarians were joined by members of the local Inner Wheel to scrub clean the white war grave headstones of 13 fallen Second World War soldiers, sailors and airmen.

“The vicar asked us what we could do to help and it’s dropped, as it happens, during the Rotary’s clean up week,” said Rotn Phil Bustin, the club’s press officer and almoner.

Phil said that some of the graves have been neglected for years because families have died off or moved away.

Many are stained with moss and dirt so the volunteers set to work, using scrubbing brushes and buckets of water and detergent to get them clean.

“These young men were good enough to give their lives for our country, for our freedom, so the least we can do is clean up their graves afterwards,” Phil added.

Coincidentally, one of the graves cleaned was that of RAF Bomber, Sgt Denis Alexander, who died aged 21 on 5th March 1943 - 70 years ago to the day of the clean up, possibly in the Ruhr Air Offensive.