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Renovated Cookham Dean war memorial set to be rededicated

Will Taylor

Preparations for the unveiling of the renovated war memorial are being finalised as the villages prepare to commemorate their fallen next month.

The memorial, in Church Road, Cookham Dean has undergone improvements for more than two years after its condition began to deteriorate.

With only turf improvements left to complete, the memorial is ready for a service at 10.45am on Friday, November 11, which St John the Baptist church warden Richard Simmonds, who helped the renovation, described as a ‘rededication’.

The service will be conducted in the same format as it was when it was first dedicated, in 1919 following the First World War.

Mr Simmonds said: “It is a great opportunity to remember those in both wars who left the village and did not come back, and also to remember the horrors of war, and that we should not have any others.

“I can remember the war memorial as a very little boy. It is the focal point of the village.”

Villagers have been asked by those involved in the renovation project to turn up at the memorial by 10.30am at the latest, and a rendition of the Last Post will be played shortly after, just as it was in 1919.

The memorial is inscribed with the names of villagers who died in the wars. Crosses bearing the names of the fallen are going to be carried and planted by children.

The road will be closed for the service from 10.30-11.30am.

Shez Courtenay-Smith, project manager for the War Memorial Renovation Project, said it was a ‘real major event’ and the works had to ‘go through an awful lot’ to get to this stage.

She was praised by parish council chairwoman Fiona Hewer, who will make a presentation during the event.

“I think people will be very impressed with what they see,” she said.

“It is an important part of the village.”

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