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Sussex politicians back Argus campaign to honour Sussex's WWI heroes
Political leaders have thrown their support behind The Argus campaign to build a monument to the Royal Sussex Regiment’s First World War dead.
The Honour our Heroes campaign was launched on March 24 with the goal of funding a memorial in the French hamlet of Priez – the site of the regiment’s first casualties in The Great War.
So far £33,000 has been raised with a total of £60,000 needed to fund the monument and take veterans’ families over for the unveiling.
Caroline Lucas, Green MP for Brighton Pavilion, said the memorial will be a fitting tribute to remember the 7,302 regimental deaths.
She said: “I welcome the campaign and hope the planned memorial will play a part in reminding future generations of both the remarkable courage and sacrifice of so many involved in the war.
“The anniversary of the First World War is also an opportunity to promote peace and international co-operation in the name of all those who lost their lives.”
Mike Weatherley MP, Conservative for Hove, added: “This is a worthy campaign and I support it wholeheartedly. I am confident that the target will be reached with help from the good people of Sussex.”
Simon Kirby, Conservative for Kemptown, added: “The memorial will be a fitting way to recognise the bravery and sacrifice of the men of the Royal Sussex Regiment who gave their lives.”
Sir Andrew Bowden, MP for Kemptown from 1970 to 1997 and former president of the Brighton branch of the British Legion, also contacted The Argus after sending off his donation.
He said: “I’m delighted The Argus is sponsoring a memorial campaign to members of the Royal Sussex Regiment who died for God, king and country in the First World War.
“It’s vital that this war – like the Second World War – was in defence of freedom and the protection of the British people.
“I’m confident the people of Sussex will ensure the target is reached.”
While the fundraising effort continues, work is nearly finished on the memorial – which will be shipped over to France to be ready for the unveiling on September 10.
Colonel Roderick Arnold, from the Royal Sussex Regimental Association, thanked readers for their donations.
He said: “The Argus and readers have been fantastic. However, we still need more money and September is coming round very quickly.
“We are also appealing to any relatives of those who died in the earlier part of the war to come forward.”
Any relatives who would like to get in touch should email Major Brian Hudson at email@example.com. Donations can be made online at mydonate.bt.com/events /priez.
Alternatively cheques can be sent to Major Hudson, made out to “War Memorial Fund” and sent to Mr B Hudson, 29 Henry Avenue, Littlehampton, BN16 2PA.
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