Cenotaph plagued by graffiti

AT a time when British soldiers are fighting for freedom in Iraq Ipswich's cenotaph is a crumbling wreck plagued by yobs scrawling graffiti.The memorial in Christchurch Park was once a pride of the town – one of the finest in the country.

AT a time when British soldiers are fighting for freedom in Iraq Ipswich's cenotaph is a crumbling wreck plagued by yobs scrawling graffiti.

The memorial in Christchurch Park was once a pride of the town – one of the finest in the country.

But today the tribute to World War One fallen is desecrated with unsightly graffiti, crumbling masonry and rubbish said one former serviceman.

Glancing at the state of the cenotaph in Christchurch Park, Peter Thompson, said with sadness: "It is despicable."


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Mr Thompson, secretary of the Royal British Legion's Ipswich branch argues it is the responsibility of Ipswich Borough Council to look after the memorial.

"When people see the state of it they can't believe it," said Mr Thompson. "It dishonourable to those people who gave their lives in battle.

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"There are cracks in the stonework and rubbish laid around it. It is crumbling and in a disgusting state.

"You can hardly read the names on it.

"There were two Act of Parliaments which said the Borough Council are supposed to maintain war memorials.

"There is graffiti, empty bottles laying about.

"If it rains the water just lays there on the surface of the memorial and it is slippery to stand on.

"The masonry is cracking and there are holes in the stonework which the kids put things in. If there is frost it just gets worse.

"It is in a terrible state.

"It is a slur on the council and the people of Ipswich"

He has been spearheading a campaign to raise funds for an extension to the cenotaph which would include the names of the 610 Ipswich World War Two dead and war heroes who died in subsequent battles.

So far the appeal has raised £65,000 – but The Royal British Legion are only half way to reaching their target.

"If God forbid in this conflict any of these lads are killed from Ipswich we have just at the moment got no where to put the names.

"But no one seems to be interested."

Ipswich Borough Council were unavailable for comment.

nWhat do you think? Write in to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or email eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk or visit the forum at www.eveningstar.co.uk

n If you know of or saw any of the vandals who daubed graffiti on the memorial then telephone the Evening Star news desk on 01473 324789.

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