Saturday, 20 September 2008

The story behind Luton Memorial Meadow

A few months ago I went to the dedication of Luton Memorial Meadow and a moving occasion it was too. Today, in advance of the Mayor's visit on Thursday, I went to see Don Philips who, along with a few other veterans has single handed made the memorial meadow what it is. We spent some time together this morning looking through his photo album which rather brilliantly tells the story of its evolution from a field into a beautifully landscaped place to commemorate fallen soldiers from the Luton area. Not only has there been a lot of physical help but a number of kind donations from local Lordswood and Luton councillors, as well as private businesses.

There is genuine concern locally that the memorial meadow may become a victim of the obsession by central government to build houses on almost any remaining green space in the South East, but hopefully with common sense from Medway council and the huge support of local people (as well as the meadow's most famous supporter, Dame Vera Lynn) any kind of threat to the future of the memorial would be quickly seen off. I would like to see this kind of area protected so that future generations will be able to pay their respects to those who lost their lives in the name of freedom.

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