New information panel unveiled in Shoreham park
A permanent reminder of Shoreham's contribution to the Great War was unveiled in Buckingham Park this morning.
The new information board completes the Training For War project, organised by Worthing Museum and Art Gallery and funded by a £38,000 Heritage Lottery grant.
Located north of the bowling green on the west side of the park, it was unveiled by Adur District Council chairman Carson Albury and Worthing mayor Michael Donin.
The board gives an introduction to Shoreham Army Camp, including a map and stories of the soldier’s lives there.
The camp extended from Buckingham Park up to Mill Hill and Slonk Hill, covering some 350 acres.
Mr Albury said: “It has been fascinating to see Training For War unfolding. Everyone involved has put so much energy into this project since the very beginning and it’s really taught us all so much about our local history.
“As well as all of the work on site, the team have unearthed some amazing press articles and publications about life in the army camp, turning it from distant history into stories which we can all relate to.”
Mr Donin added: “It has been a privilege to watch the project progress and it’s a great example of how our students, volunteers and professional curators can really come together to make something happen.
“There have been many opportunities to stop and celebrate – or marvel – over the last two years, and installing this special information board in Buckingham Park will ensure that many more people get the chance to do so in the future.
“As a Canadian I am extremely proud of the contribution and sacrifice made by my fellow Canadians in the Great War. Canada has always answered the call for help from the Mother Country.”
Also at the ceremony was 12-year-old Ashley Keith, who found an original First World War horseshoe on Slonk Hill, featured on the new panel.
It was his discovery, made as part of archaeological digs at the start of the project in autumn 2014, that led to the discovery of the Royal Artillery involvement at the camp.
Ashley’s family was also involved in a series of historical walks up to Slonk Hill, led by Worthing Museum curator Hamish MacGillivray and project co-ordinator Gail Mackintosh.
Mr MacGillivray said: “We had not planned for this information board but there was such an interest on the walks that we used some of the spare Heritage Lottery money to fund an introductory panel.
“People were asking why there wasn’t any permanent reminder as they had not known about Shoreham Army Camp.”
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