Crowds gathered at a new garden to commemorate
village soldiers who died during the two World Wars.
Renovations to Northop Hall’s Cenotaph and memorial garden were completed last month, leaving villagers and politicians to gather for the re-dedication and remembrance.
The Rev Dr Richard Hainsworth, vicar of the parish of Northop, led the ceremony, aided by Canon Joe Stewart, the Rev Robert Balfour and the Rev Jonathan Hodgins.
The service included taking soil from the gardens of the soldiers’ previous homes and scattering the earth onto the new Garden of Remembrance at the war memorial in the village.
Community councillors hope villagers enjoy the garden. It is intended to be: ‘Enjoyed by residents and generations to come, a peaceful place to reflect on the sacrifice made by those named on the monument who paid the ultimate sacrifice.’”
Cllr John Golledge said: “We’re delighted with the renovated cenotaph and hope the community will take advantage of it to relax and to reflect on the sacrifice made by those whose names are commemorated on the memorial – not just at formal Remembrance times but through the whole year.”
MP David Hanson was “honoured” to be asked to perform the ceremonial scattering of the soil on to the new garden, where children also planted spring bulbs during Sunday’s service.
He said: “It was a very impressive service and a very good turnout, despite the terrible weather.
“The Cenotaph was to memorialise the people who died in World War One, and to think 11 died from a village of only 100 people back then is incredible.
“Northop Hall Council had organised the ceremony and I was very happy to be there.
“There were also lots of children there to commemorate the soldiers. The fact soil was taken from their previous gardens onto the new garden was very moving.”
A candle-lit walk was also held on Friday, where villagers followed the Scouts and Cubs groups as they attached plaques with the names of soldiers onto the gates where they used to live.
Mr Hanson added: “My thanks goes to Northop Hall councillors for organising the event and the support from the Heritage Lottery Fund.”
Funding for this newly landscaped war memorial was provided by Flintshire Council, the Heritage Lottery Fund, and the Armed Forces Community Covenant Grant Scheme.
Mr Hanson urges other villages to follow in Northop Hall’s footsteps, and make use of the available funding for the war memorials in their villages.
For more information, contact Mr Hanson’s office at david.hanson.mp@ parliament.uk.
See full story in the Leader