Monday, 20 May 2013


A month or so ago, I was in Staffordshire and visited the National Memorial Arboretum.  The memorial was founded in 1997, not as a war graves cemetery, but as a tribute to all those who died in public service (ie police, firemen, hospital workers, etc), a sanctuary for people to contemplate in silence (there is also a chapel on site), a place to plant a tree as a personal memorial, or a park just to wander and enjoy the plantings. 

There are already 50,000 trees on the site and some 200 separate memorials.  This is the main memorial to all those who have died since the War.  Startlingly, it already has nearly 20,000 names on it.

 The sculptures are rather splendid too.

And, movingly, on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, a ray of sun shines through this gap in the wall onto the memorial wreath.

 As well as memorials to British dead, there are forgiveness and reconciliation areas.  This is one of the memorials to those who died under the blitz bombing of German cities.  They are built from stones recovered from the Frauenkirche at Dresden and provided by the people of Dresden for the memorial.

And this is the memorial in the Japanese cherry tree garden.

This is one of the non-military memorials.

And this is the Falklands campaign memorial - very much in our minds, as Mrs Thatcher, the then Prime Minister, had herself just passed away.


  1. What a beautiful place they have created. I particularly like the aspect in the second photo. I would very much like to visit it myself.

  2. Beautiful place . I hope they are all resting in peace.