Village is facing a £40,000 funding fight for memorial

Restoration needed: Bretherton war memorial

Restoration needed: Bretherton war memorial

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A village wants to restore its cherished war memorial to its former glory in time for this year’s Remembrance Sunday commemorations.

Bretherton could be facing a £40,000 refurbishment cost for the memorial which displays the names of 16 men from the village who lost their lives in both World Wars.

Residents who attended an extraordinary meeting of Bretherton Parish Council earlier this week called for the views of villagers on funding and going forward with the work.

Parish council chairman Karen Wait said: “We had a positive turn-out. We thought we’d try the residents first and find out what the main problem was and once we got an overview of the problem look at the way to go forward with the war memorial. We’re hoping we can have it all done for Remembrance Sunday if we can.”

The chairman explained that the memorial’s problems included subsidence and that some of the engraved names of the men had become “nonexistent”.

She added: “At the moment we’ve got a cost of probably £40,000, but that’s only a ‘guestimate’ from the bits of investigatory work we’ve done.”

The parish council has approached the War Memorials Trust for funding help with the monument, which was completed and consecrated in 1922.

The Trust, subject to approval, provides grant funding of 75 per cent for investigatory and 50 per cent for approved identified works. The difference would be met by the parish council, which has also received £750 from Chorley Council. This would be added to by the parish council through its financial reserves and from the council tax precept for the next three years.

But it is unlikely this would meet the anticipated cost, particularly those of the identified works approved by the Trust.

Local war historian, Steve Williams, of the Chorley Remembers project, said: “They are not alone. There are hundreds, if not thousands like this around the country and quite a few in Chorley.

“On a personal note, I will be delighted to assist if possible with any advice and as part of Chorley Remembers, we welcome further work on our assets in the borough.”