An exciting project to pay tribute to 130 men and one woman of the Great War who are buried in Sutton Borough cemeteries has received major backing thanks to National Lottery players. Sutton’s Living Memory will embark on a range of events over the next year involving the widest possible cross section of residents in the borough.
The project, which is being sponsored by the Friends of Sutton Life Centre, will receive £9,100 from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF). The Friends are running this initiative in conjunction with the London Borough of Sutton’s World War One Forum. This was established to co-ordinate and highlight all of the various activities taking place throughout the four years that have been designated to recognise the centenary of the First World War (1914—18).
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“People assume that all the war dead are buried in graves on the continent but there are more than 100 Commonwealth War Graves from the First World War, in the London Borough of Sutton,” said chair Lord Graham Tope.
“The graves represent people of different background from teenagers inured at the front and sent home to experienced servicemen with wives and families. There is also one woman who was killed in an explosion at Brock’s Munitions Factory in North Cheam. This project has grown out of concern for the graves and other memorials.”
Activities will include:
Identifying and mapping the location of each grave
Basic research into the service personnel
Interpretive panels which will share this information and tour the borough
Guided walks to explore WW1 sites of interest in the borough
Individuals and groups will “adopt a grave”
“All research will be given to the Local Studies Centre in Sutton Library so it is available beyond the lifetime of the project,” said Lord Tope.