Generous Morrison’s shoppers brought Spalding’s planned WWII Memorial a step closer by donating a massive £860 in two days.
Members of the Royal British Legion, the Royal Naval Association (RNA), ex Lincolns and ex Paras were among the team on bucket duty, along with district council chairman Coun Rodney Grocock and wife Christine.
Although my uncle and my grandfather are mentioned on the plaque in the church, it’s nice to think that there’s going to be another, more permanent and larger memorial in Ayscoughfee Gardens.Steve Smith
Yvonne Crawford, welfare officer with Spalding branch of the RNA, said young and old supported the appeal, some sharing family stories about the war.
She said: “The generosity was just unbelievable and it wasn’t just older people donating, we had some young lads 18 or 19-years-old giving us their change. Everybody was brilliant.”
Coun Grocock, who chairs the memorial charity, also thanked those who contributed and is now appealing for donations of raffle prizes for the next big fundraiser, which takes place at a civic dinner to mark the end of his first year in office.
He said: “I would like to thank the good people of South Holland when doing their shopping at Morrison’s for their generosity and the kindness shown to members of our committee and asking questions about the charity.”
Some of the collectors are in their 80s and Coun Grocock paid tribute to the “true character and commitment of these veterans”.
Letters appealing for donations continue to go out to local businesses and Coun Grocock isn’t expecting them – or businesses who have already contributed – to help with his plea for raffle prizes.
Not all businesses are getting letter so if they, or individuals, can donate a raffle prize, please call Coun Grocock on 01775 713989 and he will be happy to collect.
The dinner takes place on March 2 at Spalding’s South Holland Centre.
Spalding man Steve Smith will see two members of his family honoured when the memorial is built in the Peace Garden in Ayscoughfee Gardens.
Steve’s grandfather, George Harold Chamberlain, was killed in North Africa on March 3, 1943, and his uncle – Stanley Vincent Douglas Smith – died on the island of Malta on April 8, 1942. Both were in their early 20s.
Steve said: “Although my uncle and my grandfather are mentioned on the plaque in the church, it’s nice to think that there’s going to be another, more permanent and larger memorial in Ayscoughfee Gardens.
“It’s nice to see it happening after all these years. It should have happened a long time ago.”
Steve says his grandfather had three children, who are all gone now, but his own generation – the grandchildren – will be lucky enough to see the memorial.
Spalding WWII Committee aims to have the memorial built by spring 2019 and needs to raise another £30,000-plus.
• Do you have stories and photographs to share of your loved ones who will be commemorated on Spalding WWII Memorial? Please email our editor: firstname.lastname@example.org