A Neglected Memorial?

Alan Swales writes:

In browsing your web site I note that you identify 3 Memorials to the Stokesley people who gave their lives in the wars. Whilst accepting that you are correct in identifying the 3 main lists of names I think you also need to be aware of the Memorial Garden (albeit that there is now no indication as to its purpose) on Levenside, to which I have just recently drawn the attention of the Parish council, as to its current state of repair.

I appreciate that not many Stokesley residents are aware of this area and its designation, if there are any old enough and remember, (I am now 75) but I think there must be reference in some old council or church minute


Alan Swales

This is a copy of a letter in which Alan refers the matter to the attention of the Parish Council:

Date 19 June 2013

Stokesley Parish Council
Town Hall
76 Market Place

Re. Stokesley “War Memorial Ground” Riverside?

Being aware of both national and local interest in the forthcoming 100 anniversary of the First World War due over the next year or so, I raise the query as below.

Born in Stokesley in 1938 and for a while living on Levenside at the “Lodge” adjacent the footbridge, I was aware that the small area bordering the river, from the footbridge to the then ford (now filled in) i.e. adjacent Stokesley Motors and the road bridge, was designated as a “War Memorial Park or Ground” (not certain which war but I presume the first).

The area with its seats, surrounded by white railings then in the 40s and 50s, was accessed by two gates, one adjacent the footbridge and one near the then ford; each gate was fitted with a small brass plate to the effect that you were entering a “Memorial Park or Ground.” These plaques and the gates have long gone.

My Dad on many occasions scythed / cut the grass within the area, the seats were well maintained and I think there were some stone planters adjacent the seats.
I am sure that there must be some ref. in old records, church or parish to this area and some of the older Stokesley residents may have better memories.

The ground now seems forgotten and neglected with the seats almost unusable and I feel that with the onset of the anniversary now is the time to redress this situation, with perhaps the help of local organizations (SPIOTA) to whom I have copied this letter and perhaps local charity organizations and the school children (bulbs)

Forwarded for your note and interest.

Yours faithfully

Alan Swales

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