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New memorial for Hertsmere's war dead gets backing

Last Modified September 23, 2022
Plans to provide a memorial for all service personnel who have served and died defending our country since the creation of the borough of Hertsmere have received support.

Our councillors voted to back the proposal, which was part of a motion commemorating the 40th anniversary of the British victory in the Falkland Islands at their full council meeting last night (Wednesday 21 September). The proposal committed the Executive to explore funding for a memorial at the Civic Offices bearing the names of all Hertsmere armed service personnel who served and died since the borough was created in 1974.

The motion also called on the council to acknowledge and remember the sacrifice which comes with war and commend the future sacrifices of service personnel; recognise Britain's longstanding ties with the Falkland Islands and celebrate the referendums which showed overwhelming support among Islanders to remain British; and drew parallels between the conflict and the current Ukrainian war.

The motion was proposed by Councillor Harry Mortimer and seconded by Cllr Paul Hodgson-Jones. In a speech at the meeting, Cllr Mortimer highlighted the case of local man Bernard James Still, who died aged 26 while serving on HMS Coventry during the conflict.

Cllr Mortimer said: "Bernard's daughter gave birth to his grandchild, in this, the 40th anniversary year. However, Bernard will not see his grandchild.

"It's only right that we in the chamber remember those who have fallen in all conflicts defending our freedoms and democracies, past, present and those in service today willing to put themselves in jeopardy at our expense.

"This cost is only too heavy, and we see it being paid by other countries across the world today. A cost the UK government is rightly contributing to and helping to support."

Cllr Hodgson-Jones said: "We, in this country, have a long history of constructive engagement around the world; of bringing democracy, of bringing peace to parts of the world that did not have it.

"That is what the UK did in 1982; it's what the UK is doing today, supporting countries not just in Ukraine, but elsewhere where there is aggression.

"We should honour the people who devote their lives to doing that, and we should certainly honour the people who lose their lives doing that - and that is what the motion is about."

A webcast of the full council meeting is available to view here.


Posted on Friday 23rd September 2022

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