Councillors ‘wholeheartedly’ support plans for new 15ft Hartlepool Bombardment memorial

The bombardment memorial tablet
The bombardment memorial tablet

COUNCILLORS have “wholeheartedly” supported plans for a new 15ft memorial to the hundreds killed or seriously injured in the Bombardment of Hartlepool.

As the town gets set to mark the attack’s 100th anniversary, Hartlepool Borough Council’s regeneration services committee met to hear of the progress made by the authority to mark the centenary.

Among the plans are a granite or magnesian limestone memorial on the Headland, which would cost around £60,000.

David Worthington, the council’s head of culture and regeneration, told the meeting that work on collections, exhibitions, research and outreach events is underway.

Mr Worthington said this includes a Voices of the Bombardment six-month exhibition at the Museum of Hartlepool, starting in September.

He added that this year’s Headland Heritage Festival will largely centre on The Great War.

Mr Worthington added that there will also be a World War One exhibition in Hartlepool Central Library in December.

He said there will be formal events taking place throughout the borough on December 16 which is the anniversary of the Bombardment, including a service run by the Heugh Gun Battery Trust, with potential for an ex-servicemen’s parade.

He added: “It’s possible that a memorial will be unveiled and we are still seeking a VIP to unveil that memorial.

“There will then be a civic event in the Borough Hall, and the evening will end with an outdoor theatre performance by an organisation called Periplumb Theatre.

“We are looking at a memorial for the Headland and it will feature images from the James Clark painting of the Bombardment.”

Council leader, Councillor Christopher Akers-Belcher, said: “With regards to the memorial I think it should be supported.

“I think, bearing in mind the history that we have in Hartlepool, it’s a significant sign of respect to have a memorial in place for December 16.

“The fact that we incorporate James Clark pictures or some stills from, I think is quite unique and a really fitting memorial to have in Hartlepool. I would wholeheartedly support it.”

Updates are expected on a three-monthly basis.

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