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Learning her Job at a Steelworks

It is sometimes claimed that women are not commemorated on war memorials. This is not true but you do have to look a bit harder to find them, only because their casualty rates weren’t as high. However, their contribution to the war effort is not as visible. This is set to be addressed by Sheffield Council who have announced that they will be working with women who worked in the steel industry during WW2 to create a memorial to recognise their efforts. 

Four ideas have been proposed: an abstract sculpture, a bronze sculpture, a garden of remembrance or commemorative plaques.

It will be interesting to see what they choose.

Certain people in Penarth have been busy recently as a couple of new memorials have been erected. One, commemorating two Penarth-born men who were awarded the Victoria Cross during the Great War, has been placed on the front wall of the Penarth District Council Offices in Stanwell Road, Penarth.

The second, placed in Penarth RFC Club, commemorates 17 club players who were either killed in action, died of wounds or died of illness in WW1. Produced by a local artist, Andrew Coslett, it complements the memorial stand that was erected at the ground in February 1925.

Plans have recently been unveiled to create a new national war memorial in Dover.  The proposed memorial would stand in Drop Redoubt, a disused Napoleonic Fort on Dover’s Western Heights. 

It would include a series of free-standing stone walls listing all those from the UK and Commonwealth countries who died in the First and Second world wars – an incredible 1.7 million names, making it unique in this country and probably the world.

If successful, the plan is to open the memorial by 2014, the 100th anniversary of the start of the First World War.

Read more from Kent Online 

A tree and plaque have been dedicated at the National Memorial Arboretum, Staffordshire, in memory of servicemen used as test subjects during the Cold War.  Hundreds of servicemen took part in experiments between 1939 and 1989 at the Ministry of Defence’s Porton Down laboratories.  The tests included being exposed to chemicals such as Sarin and mustard gas and other nerve agents.  One serviceman, Leading Aircraftman Ronald Maddison, died and many others claim to have suffered from ill health ever since.

In January the government issued an apology and £3m in compensation for 360 veterans.  The memorial was erected at the request of the Porton Down Veterans Support Group.

Read more from BBC News

A new memorial plaque has been unveiled at Llanelli District Cemetery for a local soldier who died in action in Iraq on 7 July 2007. 

Lance Corporal Francis was the driver of a Warrior armoured fighting vehicle that was hit by a roadside bomb while on patrol in northern Basra.  He was 23 years old and on his third tour of duty in Iraq with the 2nd Battalion The Royal Welsh.

Read more about the unveiling ceremony from Llanelli Star 

Read more about Lance Corporal Francis from the Ministry of Defence

A Second World War veteran, Bob Piper, is leading calls for a new war memorial to be erected in Southwater, West Sussex.  While the town has a memorial plaque inside the local church, Mr Piper believes a more substantial memorial should be built.  He also comments that, “the Church is not for everybody in this day and age.”

Even after the First World War, when Christianity played a more significant role in many people’s lives, there was much debate over whether it was appropriate to site memorials in churches and churchyards.

Read more from The Argus

On Sunday a new memorial was unveiled at The Royal Garrison Church of All Saints, Farnborough Road, Aldershot, that commemorates the Parachute Regiment and Airborne Forces. 

Read more from Surrey and Hants Star

The memorial consists of a rough-hewn block of Purbeck stone.  Three older memorial plaques were also incorprated into the new memorial stone.  Aldershot was home to the Parachute Regiment for 60 years and the church remains the Regimental Church.