Search This Blog

Saturday 26 April 2008

Lost memorial - Askam in Furness

On May 25, 1920 an article appeared in the Barrow News describing the unveiling of a war memorial at Askam in Furness commemorating 16875 Pte George Henry Jones, 1st Bn KORL, 'Fell in Action, Ypres May 24, 1915' - a former member of the town band. It was placed on what is described as the 'band stand' on the top floor of the Assembly Rooms beside the place where George, a cornet player, habitually stood.

The memorial, incorporating George's cap badge, was designed and made (in wood or metal?) by Mr Hargreaves a member of the band committee. The ceremony was presided over by Mr Henry Mellon, mining engineer, local councillor and JP and the unveiling performed by Myles Kennedy, owner of the Roanhead Iron Mines where
Private Jones had been employed before the war.
The whole audience rose and stood in silence while Mr Kennedy removed the Union Jack from the tablet, and remained standing while the band played The Dead March. The prayers of dedication were recited by Rev E W Ridley. Mr Wm Noall, of Dalton, rendered one of his original poems, entitled 'A Retrospect' in the course of which reference was made to the deceased soldier, who had been 'missed from the ranks, but found up in Heaven'.

In his address Myles Kennedy alluded to the fact that one hundred and ten men joined the forces from the Roanhead workforce of whom eight were killed in action and three died of wounds.

The assembly Rooms were demolished sometime around the time of WW2 and the memorial presumably lost. As I write this, however, Mr Harry Barker of Askam, a long time member of the Town Band is attempting to discover whether or not it survives in the village, perhaps in the possession of a relative of Pte Jones.

No comments: