Lest we forget – silent soldier silhouettes installed to mark the end of WW1

Posted on: 9 November 2018

To mark the final year of the World War One centenary, silent soldier silhouettes are being positioned across North Devon.

The parks team at North Devon Council has installed five near life-size silhouettes of a First World War ‘Tommy’ in support of the Royal British Legion’s ‘Thank You’ movement. The aim of the movement is to encourage the public to say ‘Thank You’ to the First World War generation who served, sacrificed, rebuilt and changed the nation.

A silent silhouette has been installed outside the council’s office in Brynsworthy and in the following council owned parks:

• Imperial Gardens, Barnstaple town centre
• Rotary Gardens, Pilton
• Bicclescombe Park, Ilfracombe
• Runnymede Gardens, Ilfracombe

Leader of North Devon Council, Councillor Des Brailey, says: “Our councillors and staff are honoured to pay their respects by locating these silhouettes around the district. As a former serving member of the armed forces I am honoured to be able to recognise the sacrifice that our brave men and women gave for our freedom.”

Executive Member for Parks, Leisure and Culture, Councillor Dick Jones, says: “We are very proud to be able to take part in the Royal British Legion’s commemoration of the centenary of the end of World War One. In remembrance of those in the armed forces who came home ‘silently’ from the war, as well as those who never made it home.”

Local ward member for Pilton, Councillor Mair Manuel, says: “I’m delighted to give my support to the Royal British Legion Silent Soldier initiative. The silhouette in Rotary Gardens, alongside the recently unveiled WW1 war memorial will provide us all with a reminder of the huge sacrifices made by local Pilton people for future generations during the Great War.”

Local ward member for Pilton, Councillor Brian Greenslade, says: ” I am delighted to see this installed at a most appropriate time of the 100th anniversary of the ending of the first world war. Such things mean a lot to me as my grandfather fought in France and Belgium during WW1. Yet another good reason to visit the peaceful and lovely Rotary Gardens which have been much improved in recent years.”

Local ward member for Ilfracombe West, Councillor Ian Meadlarkin, says: “I was very pleased with the installation of the silent soldier at Bicclescombe park as it sends a strong signal that the community recognises the sacrifices by all those that gave their lives in all the conflicts of the past as well as those that fought and returned home to their families.”

Local ward member for Ilfracombe West, Councillor Geoffrey Fowler, says: “I think this is an absolutely marvellous way to commemorate the end of WW1. As we approach the centenary date it is important that we, as a community, have tangible reminders of the fallen as we enjoy our leisure time. We have a lot to be thankful for and a huge sense of gratitude to those who left Ilfracombe on our behalf to face a torrid time in foreign lands.”

For more information about the silhouttes, please visit the Royal British Legion website.

If you have any questions about the solider silhouettes, please contact parks@northdevon.gov.uk.

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