Bombardment memorial plans

The site of the proposed new Bombardment memorial.
The site of the proposed new Bombardment memorial.

PLANS for a new 15ft memorial to the hundreds killed or seriously injured in the Bombardment of Hartlepool is expected to move a step nearer this week.

Hartlepool Borough Council is looking to mark the attack’s 100th anniversary with the memorial that will cost around £60,000.

Councillors sitting on the regeneration services committee will meet later this week to hear the latest plans and discuss three options for the memorial to those who lost their lives on December 16, 1914.

Officers say the proposed site is on land behind the cannon next to the Heugh Gun Battery on the Headland.

Further details of the plans for the memorial will be discussed at Thursday’s meeting.

A report by David Worthington, the council’s head of culture and information, said the memorial would be constructed from granite cladding sections around a solid core or solid granite sections.

It is planned to feature four bronze panels, three depicting scenes from the James Clarke Bombardment Painting and the fourth with the following words:

“This memorial commemorates all those across the Borough of Hartlepool who were killed or wounded due to the naval bombardment of the 16th December 1914.

“At least 114 civilians, nine soldiers and seven sailors were killed, with 500 others being seriously wounded.

“Contemporaries truthfully stated that no local family was untouched by the events of that day.

“The scenes depicted on the sides are taken from local artist James Clark’s painting “The Bombardment of the Hartlepools”(1915), which portrays the attack as it occurred close to this spot.

“The figures symbolise those who found themselves caught up in the attack, young and old, civilian or military.

“We will remember them.”

It will also have badges from the services who lost personnel that day including the Royal Regiment of Artillery, the Royal Navy, the Royal Engineers and The Durham Light Infantry.

Councillors are being asked on Thursday to consider three options for the top of the memorial, a flat top, a tapered top and a lighthouse-style top.

Hartlepool council has set aside £60,000 to underwrite the cost of the memorial so work can start, with the hope the cost can be covered by commercial sponsorship.

Subject to planning approval, it is hoped the work will be finished in November in time for the official opening on December 16 this year.

The regeneration services committee meets on Thursday, July 31, at 9.30am in the Civic Centre, Victoria Road.