Selston unveils £38,000 war memorial

Dedication service of new war memorial on Alfreton Road, Selston.
Dedication service of new war memorial on Alfreton Road, Selston.

More than 1,000 people gathered for the official dedication of a new £38,000 war memorial in Selston over the weekend.

The new memorial bears the more than 80 names of local servicemen who died in the two world wars and was unveiled as the centenary of the start of the First World War approaches.

Although Selston already has a memorial plaque within St Helen’s parish church for some of the servicemen who died in the world wars of 1914-18 and 1939-45, many of the names are missing and the plaque is not always accessible.

Therefore, County Councillor Gail Turner and Ashfield District councillor Sam Wilson, with the support of Selston Parish Council, set out to raise funds for a new landmark which could be visited at all times.

Nottinghamshire County Council’s Supporting Local Communities Fund provided £20,000 towards the memorial, with the remainder coming from Ashfield District Council and Selston Parish Council.

Coun Turner, who represents Selston on the County Council, said it was appropriate that the memorial should be dedicated the week before the centenary of the start of World War One.

She added: “It’s dreadful that Selston has gone so long without a proper war memorial.

“At last the people of Selston who lost their lives in fighting for their country can be remembered properly.”

The Portland stone obelisk has six sides at its base, with the names of the fallen being carved in grey granite.

Coun Turner attended Saturday’s dedication service lead by Revd Fiona Shouler from St Helen’s Church, Selston where all four local schools contributed with singing, bell ringing and readings.

She said: “The service was very moving and we had the laying of wreaths by a lot of relatives of those named on the memorial.

Almost £400 was raised at the event which will go towards the maintenance of the memorial.

Coun Wilson said: ”How everyone in Selston has pulled together to help get this project off the ground has been phenomenal.

“Now the village has a proper war memorial which will be the focal point of events on each and every Remembrance Sunday.”