Vandals smash memorial seat for a second time

Repaired: Andrew Hawkins on the bench that has been repaired and will return once more to the churchyard. Photo: SG010211-111NG

Repaired: Andrew Hawkins on the bench that has been repaired and will return once more to the churchyard. Photo: SG010211-111NG

0
Have your say

VANDALS in Holbeach have again smashed a memorial seat dedicated to a woman who devoted her life to ex-service veterans.

Anne Woolley, a founder member of the women’s section of The Royal British Legion, died in 2004 aged 82.

Last April, the bench seat placed in All Saints’ churchyard in memory of Anne was smashed to smithereens.

Town businessman Andrew Hawkins, boss of hardware store L S Hawkins, provided a new seat and that was dedicated to Anne’s memory in June in a ceremony conducted by Canon John Wickstead.

But the new bench had its arm rests ripped off in an attack on Sunday, January 23.

Friends of Anne - including Mr Hawkins - are urging young people in Holbeach to show more respect to a woman who spent her life helping others.

Mr Hawkins said: “We are very disappointed, bitterly disappointed, that it has been damaged again.

“The first one was damaged beyond repair and we replaced it as a gesture to Mrs Woolley’s memory.

“She lived just around the corner from here. I was born in Holbeach and I had known Mrs Woolley all of my life.”

As well as supporting the Legion and Burma Star Association, Mrs Woolley frequently travelled abroad and found war graves - letting families know where there loved ones were buried.

She also supported town charties.

Mr Hawkins said it was a great shame that the vandals who smashed the bench didn’t show more respect for someone who had lived such a good life.

The seat has been repaired at his Barrington Gate shop and is due to be put back in the churchyard.

Legion women’s section secretary Pam Sells said members had once again been upset by such “stupid, needless, useless vandalism”.

She said: “I wish the police showed themselves a bit more in Holbeach and maybe these hooligans could rehome themselves away from the churchyard and Church Street, especially at weekends.”