A public service to unveil the new Llantrisant War Memorial will take place at the Bull Ring on Armistice Day.
Following nine years of work and research, the Llantrisant War Memorial will be unveiled to the public for the first time on Friday, November 11, at 11am, by Rhondda Cynon Taf Council and the Llantrisant War Memorial Committee.
For future generations, the Llantrisant War Memorial will be the focal point for services in the heart of the town. The Bull Ring site was chosen following public consultation.
Cllr Andrew Morgan, Leader of Rhondda Cynon Taf Council and President of the Llantrisant War Memorial Committee, said:
“I am delighted that Llantrisant War Memorial is to be unveiled to the public on Armistice Day 2016, at 11am.
“It will stand as a lasting reminder to future generations as we continue to remember those who gave their lives during war and conflict.
“The Council is proud to be associated with this project as it continues to support its armed services, both past and present.”
Rhondda Cynon Taf Council was one of the first Local Authorities in Wales to establish an Armed Forces Covenant in order to reiterate its commitment and value to the Armed Forces, both past and present.
The Armed Forces Community Covenant sets out the commitment it shows former and serving members of the Armed Forces and their families, from financial assistance to signposting to support services.
Rhondda Cynon Taf Mayor, Cllr Rhys Lewis, said:
“The new Llantrisant War Memorial will stand on the Bull Ring as a lasting reminder for those who gave their lives on our behalf.
“Situated in the heart of the town, it will provide a place where people will be able to come along and remember, reflect and give thanks.
“It will be a huge honour for me to be among the first to lay a Poppy Wreath at the new Llantrisant War Memorial.”
Ward councilor Glynne Holmes, also chairman of the Llantrisant War Memorial Committee, said:
“It all started when people asked me why we did not have a war memorial in our town. A campaign was started and our committee raised £17,000 to fund a War Memorial fitting to remember those townspeople who have made the ultimate sacrifice.
“Now I think we have fulfilled a duty – a very important duty – to all those men and women who died in battle so that we can live the lives we do today.
“There are so many people to thank for making this day possible, none more so than our researcher and local historian, retired RAF serviceman Mike John, who compiled a full list of the names the monument.
“I would also like to thank the members of the Llantrisant War Memorial Committee, Rhondda Cynon Taf Council, the Royal British Legion and the countless individuals who have assisted with this community project.”
Mr John worked tirelessly for nine years researching the names of the fallen and also designing a fitting War Memorial and surround seating made from Portland Stone, which would complement the “ancient environment.”
Mr John said: “There are memorial plaques to the fallen of both World Wars in Llantrisant Church, but it soon became apparent from research activities that these provided a very reduced list of those from the town who had been killed.”
Mr John discovered that 70 men from Llantrisant town and surrounding areas had lost their lives during First World War, and a further 21 men and one woman died during the Second World War and later conflicts.
Llantrisant War Memorial, made of Portland Stone, weighs around three tons and stands 2.8metres (8ft) high. The Cross of Sacrifice has been created by Welsh sculptor David Peterson, the son of former British heavyweight boxer Jack Petersen.
Rhondda Cynon Taf Council granted planning permission for the site of the Llantrisant War Memorial in April this year.
The Unveiling of Llantrisant War Memorial takes place at the Bull Ring, Llantrisant, at 11am on Friday 11th November.
All are welcome.