I came accross this magnificent memorial recently and could see how new it looked and so was curious about its history, it seems this memorial owes it's creation to one local man who took 66 years to finally realise his dream. Below is a report from the local paper:
ON a chilly November day in 1950, a seven-year-old boy was approached by a family in the village of Aldington – a small countryside hamlet midway between Ashford and Folkestone.
The family were from London and wanted to locate the memorial for those lost in the village during the First World War.
Remarkably, 66 years later, that chance meeting would become a life-long obsession for that little boy.
Today, David Hughes is now 73 and something of a war memorial expert, and he is about to finally deliver what he believes is a fitting tribute to the fallen of the Great War, as he prepares to unveil a memorial to the 49 men and one woman who were killed.
“I was playing in the village when this car pulled up next to me. A family from London wanted to remember their relative who died in the war and lay some flowers on the memorial – I had to break it to them that there was no such memorial.
“They were dismayed when I said all we had was a plaque at the church and that was the only visible sign in the village that anyone had been killed in World War One from Aldington.
“And that moment touched me. I was only seven at the time. Remember, the Second World War had not long ended, so the subject of war was still very fresh in people’s memories.
“I knew then that Aldington should have its own memorial and at that moment, I decided I had to do something about it.
“After heading to the home of Bill Deedes, later Lord Deedes, and asking him about it, he agreed there should be a memorial. His wife used to keep horses in a local field, so I sort of knew them.
“With his promise ringing in my ears, I assumed something would be done and I understood it could take some time, but I never realised at the time that he was so busy it must have slipped his mind.”
Years passed, and nothing happened and Mr Hughes realised he had to do more.
He told us: “What I learned about these memorials is that no one actually owns them, and that’s why so many have fallen in to disrepair, which is a shame.
“It was then a long saga with me trying to get people interested including the parish council, but money was still generally tight for this sort of project.
“The idea of a memorial was put on the back burner for decades, but I recently took up the fight again, and with the help of social media, word got around so much faster and more people came forward with offers of money.
“People did runs, and other fund raising events. I can’t believe how fast we raised the money for this memorial. It shows the changing times where everyone is connected electronically. Word gets out so much faster.”
The £12,000 memorial, standing almost 10 feet tall, now takes in Aldington, Bonnington and Hurst. It lists all 50 names of those lost.
Mr Hughes said: “During my research for this memorial, some of which took place while I was in the Army myself in 1958, I was amazed to actually track down details of three German soldiers who had killed Aldington locals.
“It was a shock and shows there are always two sides to war.”
Now at 11am on 2nd July 2016, the new war memorial will finally be officially unveiled to honour Aldington’s role in the wars – he even personally worked on the paving.
The distinctive A-shape is made of local ragstone and is the first new war memorial to be put up in Kent for some time.
To Find the Cache
Visit the memorial at the given coordinates and find the following information:
In remembrance of all ranks of the ABth (Newfoundland) Heavy Regiment Royal Artillery
Cth Dragoon Guards
DEst King George V's Own Horse
The number of commisioned officers listed on the memorial = F
N 51 (C-A-D) (C-D) . A (B-E) (A+F)
E 000 (F+E) (A+E) . (F+E) (F-E) (D+F)
The remember them!”
If anyone would like to place a War Memorial Cache of your own then please do so. We would ask if you do so please contact Just-us-Two through their profile page or on email at
firstname.lastname@example.org so they can keep track of numbers
*****PLEASE NOTE IMPORTANT *****
****PHYSICAL CACHES ARE NOT ALLOWED TO BE PLACED ON THE ACTUAL MEMORIAL OR WITHIN THE
BOUNDARY OF SUCH MEMORIALS AT ALL TIMES TREAT LOCATIONS OF MEMORIALS WITH RESPECT. ****