New Wakefield war memorial to be opened this week

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A NEW memorial for fallen war heroes will be blessed in a city centre ceremony on Wednesday.

Wakefield Cathedral’s Canon Michael Rawson will conduct a dedication ceremony on behalf of the Royal British Legion (RBL) at Coronation Gardens, opposite County Hall, at 10am.

Guests including RBL’s squadron leader David Dinmore and the Mayor of Wakefield Coun Elaine Blezard will lay wreaths by the new memorial stone.

A second ceremony, performed by deputy council leader Coun Denise Jeffery and children from St John’s J&I School, will take place at 10.40am to mark the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee and celebrate the opening of the adjacent Jubilee Gardens.

Coun Jeffery said: “This will be a proud occasion of mixed emotions.

“I am very proud that we are both remembering fallen war heroes and looking to the future. I hope this whole area will act as a place where people can remember their loved ones and the service they did for their country.

“We are also celebrating all we have achieved in Wakefield in recent years and creating a lasting tribute to the Queen’s wonderful Diamond Jubilee celebrations earlier this year.”

The gardens’ centrepiece is the Art of Yorkshire, which was Welcome to Yorkshire’s award-wining 2011 Chelsea Flower Show entry and featuring a thought-provoking new sculpture by David Appleyard and Robin Dobson in the shape of a question mark.

Coun Jeffery added: “I am delighted that Welcome to Yorkshire have recognised our arts heritage by generously giving this lovely garden to Wakefield.”