Work has started on renovating Downham Market’s war memorials

Contractors begin work on cleaning the war memorial in Downham
Contractors begin work on cleaning the war memorial in Downham

Work renovating Downham’s two war memorials began this week in the wake of commemorations of the centenary of the First World War.

The town’s main memorial in the High Street and a sundial in the memorial gardens will be getting a facelift under the £6,500 project.

The names of Downham men who were killed while fighting for their country in both the First World War and the 1939-45 conflict will stand out once more after being repainted on to the stones.

On Monday, scores of people gathered around the memorial to mark the 100th anniversary with a moving service and wreath laying. These wreaths have now been moved.

Contractors H Brett and Son of Watton have begun work on cleaning the main memorial.

The stones are being doused with a power-washer and will be left to dry out for a few weeks before the names will be painted.

The crests of the Union flag and St Edmund’s, which stand on the top of the memorial, will also be painted. The sundial will also be cleaned with the names being repainted.

The project is being funded by Downham Town Council along with a £2,500 grant from the Norfolk Community Foundation.

Town councillor John Fox hopes to have both memorials renovated by Remembrance Sunday and said: “It is very poignant to be undertaking this project during this important year.

“The men listed on the memorial have paid the ultimate price so it is only right that their names are properly honoured.

“We should always remember the sacrifice they made.”