War Memorial Hidden In 'Gloomy Shrubbery'

Friends of Turnham Green want to see progress on upgrade



New Look For Chiswick War Memorial

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The Friends of Turnham Green say the Chiswick War Memorial has all but disappeared behind "unkempt and gloomy shrubbery."

Given that the memorial is in a prominent part of Chiswick and with the anniversary of the outbreak of WW1, the Friends say they would like some progress to be made on the upgrade of the area around the memorial. The matter will be discussed at their AGM.

Chair of the Friends Rebecca Frayn said; "Our war memorial is looking worse than it ever has done in the 20 years I have lived in Chiswick. In fact from three of four angles it has all but disappeared entirely amidst the unkempt and gloomy shrubbery."

Last year the Friends received approval for a new design and seating for the memorial which is on the east side of Turnham Green. There was no proposal to alter the memorial itself but the space around it was to be landscaped with seating. The idea was to provide a place for private contemplation.

However, some locals opposed the design project followed by a ballot, claiming it would fundamentally alter the 'special sense of place' of the memorial. You can read about that controversy here. The War Memorial, installed in 1921, is an obelisk in unpolished Aberdeen granite and is set with bush shaped Yew trees surrounding the obelisk, with a low mature Yew hedge and metal fencing at the boundary.

The image above is an example of a different style of memorial setting, in Shepherd's Bush, taken from the photographic collection in a blog by Frances M Thompson.

The matter was last discussed at the CAF in January, and councillors suggested that it would be appropriate to consult on ideas and possibilities "very widely" with the community and stakeholders. They said it might be more appropriate to work to a longer timeframe than the centenary of the start of World War I in 2014 to "ensure the right, rather than a rushed decision".

November 7, 2014

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