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Transforming Malton's war memorial
From the left, Paul Farndale, Colin Jennings, Alan Mitchell and John Howard who have unveiled plans to revamp Malton War Memorial
Malton’S War Memorial is to be transformed as part of a project to mark the Queen’s Jubilee year.
Members of Malton and Norton Rotary Club have initiated the plan to open up the area and improve the look of the monument which stands at junction of Yorkersgate and Horsemarket Road.
As well as the overhaul, Rotary members are also researching the names of those recorded on the memorial and building up a database of information on the club’s website.
Rotary president Alan Mitchell said the original plan had been to just tidy up the war memorial but, after consideration, they had decided to open it up as a public space.
“The war memorial is in a very prominent position in the town but is looking a bit sad and past its best,” he said.
“As part of a Jubilee year project, the Rotary decided to look at the memorial and open the area up as well, so it can be used and those attending services do not have to stand on the road.”
Plans have been submitted to Ryedale District Council to relocate the central screen wall and move it to the upper level where there will also be a new memorial stone.
A permanent flagpole will also be added, along with seats and boundary railings.
It is hoped that donations from local councils, businesses and members of the community will help pay for the work, along with a fundraising project by the Malton, Norton and District Royal British Legion.
Mr Mitchell said: “The work will be done as sensitively as possible and in the right way.
“We felt it was a way of giving something back to the public in this Jubilee year and hope to have completed the work before Remembrance Day in November.”
Colin Jennings, who is researching the names on the memorial with fellow Rotarian John Howard, said the panels list 102 names, 82 of which are those from the First World War.
“The Commonwealth War Graves Commission has a website which records hundreds of thousands of the fallen and the names on the Malton Memorial are gradually being checked against it,” he said.
“The first three names on the First World War plaque record soldiers from Norton, Hovingham and Malton. Others came from further afield.”
Mr Jennings said the youngest of those recorded was Rex Fowles, aged 17, who was an apprentice in the Merchant Marine and serving on the SS Cilurnum which was torpedoed in April, 1917.
Most senior was Lieutenant Colonel James Thomson DSO and Croix de Guerre who died in May, 1918.
“He was a native of Huddersfield but lived in the Uplands, Malton,” Mr Jennings said.
“Sarah E Hornsey was a member of the Voluntary Aid Detachment who served in military hospitals. But unfortunately, her name cannot be traced on the website.”
Anyone who would like to view the list or can provide further details of the names should visit the Malton and Norton Rotary Club website at http://www.rotary-ribi.org/clubs/homepage.php?ClubID=220 and click on ‘Malton War Memorial’.