Support for memorial campaign

Martin Sharp pictured sweeping up  at the war memorial.

Martin Sharp pictured sweeping up at the war memorial.

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page 14 aug 11 file pic lead

The Friends of Victory Square group has joined forces with Middleton Grange Shopping Centre in a bid to raise awareness about the significance of the memorial.

An information display highlighting the history of the memorial will go on show inside the shopping centre on Friday, August 19 and Saturday, August 20.

The memorial is a permanent reminder of the town’s men and women who died in wartime.

Hartlepool man Martin Sharp is behind the group.

Mr Sharp launched the group after he raised concerns about people dropping litter, drinking, playing football and skateboarding on the memorial, off Victoria Road, in the centre of Hartlepool.

The 52-year-old, who will help man the stall, said: “I am very pleased that we are going to have this information stand in the shopping centre.

“I have been pleased with the response since we started this group and things have moved faster than I would have imagined.

“The information stall will include a history of the memorial to remind and educate people of its significance.”

Hartlepool Borough Council staff clean the memorial on a daily basis.

The Friends of Victory Square group is also planning on targeting schools and colleges in the town in a bid to educate youngsters.

The stand will go on display after centre manager Mark Rycraft offered them space to promote their message.

A committee meeting has been arranged for Wednesday, August 17, at 10.30am at the Hartlepool People Centre, in Raby Road, at which further details will be confirmed.

Councillors, residents and representatives from the Royal Air Force Association, British Legion and Hartlepool Combined Services Association have all attended previous meetings of the group.

The plinths that surround the memorial have the names of the 1,800 men and women from Hartlepool who died in the Second World War, subsequent conflicts and some from the First World War that were not originally listed.

It is against the law to skateboard in Victory Square, to play ball games or to drink alcohol. The maximum penalty for breaking the by-law is a £500 fine.

For more information call Hartlepool Voluntary Development Agency (HVDA), which is supporting the group, on (01429) 262641.