War memorial means space to remember for Peacehaven and Telscombe

offical opening of the new war memorial in Peacehaven, meridian park
offical opening of the new war memorial in Peacehaven, meridian park

A long-awaited war memorial for Peacehaven and Telscombe was unveiled at Meridian Park last Friday before a parade the next day.

A topping out ceremony was held to celebrate on Friday and mayor of Peacehaven cllr Eileen Russell unveiled an information board to thank all the main sponsors, contractors and many other people and organisations who gave donations or supported the project.

“The two towns and the churches in the towns have waited a very long time for a proper war memorial with real space around it to remember the brave men who gave their lives for their country,” she said.

The next morning an inspection of Newhaven and Seaford Sea Cadet Corps was made by Lt. Col Nick Gillard of the New Zealand High Commission, London, who was excited to attend as Peacehaven was known as New Anzac-on-Sea.

Cadets raised two Union flags and the Royal British Legion Bugler, Miss Heidi Watkins, played the General Salute.

Standard Bearers from the Royal British Legion, UK Blind Veterans’ Association, Canadian Veterans’ Association, Royal Naval Association, Military Police Association and Newhaven & Seaford Sea Cadet Corps formed a guard of honour at the park entrance.

The Lord Lieutenant of East Sussex, Peter Field, inspected the Standard Bearers and then proceeded to the memorial for the service where he unveiled the memorial plaque.

The Exhortation was recited by S/Lt John Davies and the Kohima Epitaph by Mr Julian Carr, President of Group 5 of the Royal British Legion. Mr Frank Easton read all the names on the memorial.

Wreaths were laid by Mr Field, the mayor of Peacehaven, cllr John Livings of Telscombe Town Council, Lt. Col Gillard and Johan Janse van Vuuren, chairman, Royal British Legion, Peacehaven & Telscombe Branch and Rev Ian Cooper, Legion Chaplain blessed a mount nearby to enable visitors to place crosses in their own time.