New home at long last for Bagillt discarded war memorial

Reporter:

David Humphreys

A war memorial that was dumped in a recycling centre skip has finally been given a new home.

Weeks after historian Elfyn Pearce-Jones salvaged a Second World War memorial from a skip in Greenfield, the newly restored plaque has gone on display in Bagillt Library.

Military historian Mr Pearce-Jones visited Greenfield household recycling centre last month to throw away his rubbish but ended up returning home with a piece of history.

Staff at the site had just moments previously retrieved the wooden memorial, listing names of those who died during the Second World War, between 1939-1945.

It is still not known where the memorial has originated from and it is thought it is one of a pair.

The plaque has now been taken on by Bagillt Heritage Society who have placed it in their home at the village library.

Cllr Brian Doleman, secretary of the society, helped Mr Pearce Jones install the memorial with a view to a wider exhibition being held in the coming weeks.

As reported in the Leader after the memorial was found, the wife of one of the men honoured on the board broke down in tears when she heard the war memorial proudly bearing his name had been thrown into a skip.

More than 70 years after his death, Annie Shepherd said she was upset to read the plaque with her husband John Owen Jones’ name had been discarded.

Prisoner of war John Owen Jones died in 1945 after being captured in 1941 in Singapore and a long battle with illness.

Mrs Shepherd, who remarried seven years after his death, said she and Mr Jones “never had a married life together” after he went straight back to war following their marriage.

She said she didn’t hear a word from her husband for “about 12 months” and was told he was missing, presumed dead. “But never believed it to be true,” she said.

He died on his return home from the war at Chester Royal Infirmary.

Mrs Shepherd’s daughter Sandra Davies reached out to the Leader when they discovered her father’s memorial had been discarded.

Email:

david.humphreys@nwn.co.uk

See full story in the Leader

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