War memorial plans given a new look

A new visualisation of the South Ribble Council war memorial, off Watkin Lane, between Leyland and Lostock Hall. Below, the previous design
A new visualisation of the South Ribble Council war memorial, off Watkin Lane, between Leyland and Lostock Hall. Below, the previous design

New plans for a war memorial and peace garden have been drawn up to mark the centenary of the First World War.

Initial proposals for the project, which is envisaged for land between Leyland and Lostock Hall, were revealed last summer, and plans were officially put forward in

But after complaints from members of the community about the structure’s appearance, which depicted a Leyland Motors’ worker handing over a truck to a soldier, the scheme went back to the drawing board.

South Ribble Council has taken the amended proposal around the borough’s My Neighbourhood Forums to see what people think about the designs, and to invite residents to get involved.

The memorial has been designed to complement the existing four civic memorials across the borough, but will represent all of the communities in South Ribble affected by the First World War.

The council’s Armed Forces Champion, Coun Alan Ogilvie, said: “This would be a very poignant project which we want to share with all residents across the borough.

“The area made significant contributions during the First World War, and it is important that we create a memorial that will be a fitting legacy to commemorate the contribution of the forces personnel and their families.”

He added that the new version of the memorial had been welcomed by communities.

“It has been fantastic to talk to so many residents at the Neighbourhood Forums, and I’m delighted that our plans have been so enthusiastically received,” he said.

“We have a whole number of events planned between 2014 and 2018 and I look forward to seeing many residents getting involved and working as a community, particularly on this project.”

The proposed site for the new memorial is a central spot in the borough on council-owned land off Watkin Lane, where there is an area large enough to accommodate all of the elements of the design.

To accompany the war memorial, ideas have been put forward for a peace garden, entry of which will be via a pathway in the shape of a trench wall.

If the plans are approved, the garden would also include a seating area, sensory planting, interpretation panels and a footpath to link the memorial to the nearby green spaces. The interpretation panels will be the public’s main opportunity to contribute their stories, pictures and ideas to the project, and each Neighbourhood Forum will have its own individual board.

The next stages will be to secure planning permission and then to bid for special lottery funding for the memorial.

If successful, the council hopes the project will come to fruition between mid to late 2015, when it will work with local partners and residents to create, build and run the site.