Iconic war memorial to get facelift for centenary

Members of the Royal British Legion by the war memorial in St Albans Church, Forest Town.
Members of the Royal British Legion by the war memorial in St Albans Church, Forest Town.

One of Mansfield’s most iconic war memorials is to receive a much-needed refurbishment in time for next year’s 100th anniversary of the end of the 1914-1918 conflict.

The memorial and cenotaph in the grounds of St Albans Church on Clipstone Road West, Forest Town has graced the former mining village since 1921. It lists the names of all the local men who lost their lives during both the First World War and the Second World War of 1939-1945.

But over the years, the lettering on the names and the inscription has deteriorated, prompting the Clipstone and Forest Town branch of the Royal British Legion to organise the facelift.

Now the Legion would like to hear from any relatives of the men, so that they can be invited to a special service and blessing of the memorial to be held at the church in September.

“As an ex-military man myself, I thought it was sad to see the letters dropping off,” said branch chairman Neil Davidson, 54, who spent ten years in the Army with the Worcestershire and Sherwood Foresters regiment.

“We are going to clean it up ourselves during April and May and then a stonemason is to do the refurbishment during the summer. It is costing about £700, which is money we have raised through donations from within the local community.

“The memorial is in a really prominent position in the village and plays a big part in our Remembrance Day event when there is a parade. Everyone in Forest Town has got behind the project, and there has already been a lot of interest shown on social media.

“We would like all the children in the village -- Cubs, Brownies, Guides and Scouts -- to be involved in the service. But we would also like to invite any relatives of the men named on the memorial.” They can contact Neil on 07557 649095 or e-mail him at neil4529@g.mail.com