Date now set for new war memorial launch in Bradford

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: The new war memorial The new war memorial

A date has been set for the official opening of a new Bradford war memorial to honour those killed since the end of the Second World War.

The ceremony will take place on Saturday, January 25.

Bradford Council had wanted a member of the royal family to officiate but decided to go ahead when it emerged the royals were booked up well in advance.

Councillor Andrew Thornton, executive member for environment, said: “We invited a royal, but their diaries are filled so far in advance. We wanted a dedication and we didn’t want to wait.”

So the ceremony in the city’s memorial gardens will be hosted by the Lord Mayor, Councillor Khadim Hussain. Other elements will be conducted by the Bishop of Bradford, the Right Reverend Nick Baines, with the Lord Lieutenant of West Yorkshire, Dr Ingrid Roscoe, in attendance.

The memorial carries the names of Bradford people killed in active service or terrorist action since 1945.

The tribute was sparked by calls from the widow of a sergeant killed in Afghanistan. Shortly after the death of her husband Peter, Wendy Rayner urged Bradford Council to set up a new war dead memorial. The authority subsequently engaged a craftsman to create the structure and it was completed several weeks ago.

The new tribute is situated behind the war memorial in the gardens near the Alhambra Theatre. It has the Bradford crest on one side and on the other a Joint Services crest depicting air, land and sea. The Yorkshire Rose is at the bottom of the wall.

Mrs Rayner has praised the Council as “inspirational” for creating the memorial. “It recognises the efforts of those in conflicts,” she said. “It gives you somewhere to go to pay your respects.

“Bradford Council should be an inspiration for other authorities to do the same. They took on board what I asked them to do and all the families will be so proud.”

Councillor Thornton said: “We have done the right thing and it is a fitting memorial. We want to ensure our support for families of those in the armed forces continues.”

He said more details about the opening ceremony – such as the starting time – will be released after Christmas.

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