Chorley village soldier statue flattened on Armistice Day

A Chorley village’s tribute to fallen soldiers was snapped in half just hours after the nation fell silent for Armistice Day.

By Paul Faulkner
Thursday, 12th November 2020, 12:33 pm
Updated Thursday, 12th November 2020, 12:36 pm

The “silent soldier” statue on Sheep Hill Brow in Clayton-le-Woods was itself found felled yesterday afternoon (Wednesday).

The metal silhouette sculpture - one of many that can be seen across Lancashire - is known to have been standing in its usual position as the nation remembered at 11am, the time at which it would have been a focal point for local remembrance if it were not for the current lockdown.

The fact that it was later vandalised has left Clayton-le-Woods Parish Council chair Mark Clifford “disgusted”.

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The "silent soldier" statue on Sheep Hill Brow as it looked on the morning of Armistice Day (left) - and laid low by mid-afternoon (right)

“To damage anything to do with fallen soldiers at any time of year is bad enough, but it’s truly disturbing that somebody did this on Armistice Day.

“The statue has always been in a beautiful setting within a rockery at the side of the road - and anybody who drove past it yesterday morning would have seen how fantastic it looked for 11th November.

“I don’t know whether somebody has actually been trying to steal the statue or just destroy it - but it has taken some doing to snap it off completely at the base.

“But we will get him straightened out and reinstalled as soon as possible and have him back in his usual position, proudly guarding Sheep Hill Brow,” Cllr Clifford pledged.

It is not yet known how much it will cost to repair the £750 statue which was purchased by the parish council three years ago.

The first report of the damage was made around 3pm and police are keen to receive any dashcam footage prior to that which may help identify the vandals.

In a message on the In The Know website on Wednesday, PC Christian Seddon from Chorley Police said: “Today of all days, someone has snapped the silent soldier from its mounting, which is going to cost a lot of money to put right.

“If anyone has any information on who has committed this sickening act, then please contact me quoting the reference number LC20201111-0934.”

Chorley Police can be contacted on the non-emergency number 101 by emailing [email protected]

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