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Campaign for Island's war dead

Sheerness Cenotaph
Sheerness Cenotaph

A parish councillor is hoping Islanders will back a campaign to formally record all Sheppey's war dead.

Peter MacDonald, from Minster, said he was shocked and upset to learn that the names of military personnel from Sheppey who lost their lives in the service since 1918 are not recorded on the Cenotaph in Bridge Road, Sheerness.

He said: "My research to date reveals a total of 245 - a very large sacrifice from a relatively small population.

"My plan is for our local authority Swale Borough Council to accept their responsibility and provide a substantial backing wall behind the Cenotaph with suitable plaques recording the names.

"I am grateful for help from the Commonwealth War Graves Commission, The Church Authorities of Minster Abbey, the church warden of Eastchurch with Leysdown, Harty, Father Frank Moran of Sheerness Catholic Church, and Swale Borough Council for my inspection of the Sheppey Cemetery burial registers."

Swale council's cabinet portfolio holder for culture, Cllr Bryan Mulhern, said the memorial had been inherited in 1974 when the council was formed.

He said: "I don't think it is disrespectful to the war dead.

"The Sheerness memorial is quite an attractive one - I know because I chose to go to that Remembrance Service during my civic year as Mayor of Swale.

"Perhaps some of the Sheppey councillors could look to start something off with the Royal British Legion and support from the community."

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