A workshop held at Bexhill Museum looked at the existing names recorded on the Civilian War Dead Memorial on Marina.
The workshop was held to discuss the possibility of adding names that had been missed off when the memorial was first installed in 1995. The criteria for inclusion was discussed and concluded that all civilians named on the memorial should be civilian victims of war from within the old Bexhill Borough and also Bexhill civilians dying outside the borough from 1939 to 1945.
Dave Hatherell, a local historian, presented his research on the memorial plaque, its background and the civilians currently listed on it. He commented; “With increased use of the internet we now have easy access to the Commonwealth War Graves Commission’s Roll of Civilian War Dead and Coroner’s records. This has enabled a far deeper investigation than was possible in the 1990s.”
Mr Hatherell went on to provide evidence to support his suggestions for additional names to be included on the memorial and also put forward a name of someone suggested by a family member who was unable to attend the session. The afternoon concluded with the showing of a collection of images held by the Museum of Bexhill during the Second World War, around which there was much discussion. Photography was restricted in Bexhill during the war so photos of this time are rare, if you have any photos of your own we would be very pleased to hear about them.
The inscription on the current Civilian War Dead Memorial is as follows:
‘Former Borough of Bexhill
Roll of Honour of Civilian War Dead
Ada M. Adamson - 73 Yrs, Alfred V. Barker - 19 Yrs, Jane C. Cana - 84 Yrs, Leslie J. Collis - 44 Yrs, Edith L. Corke - 39 Yrs, Eleanor M. Coventry - 65 Yrs, Annie L. Coverdale - 75 Yrs, Evelyn Coverdale - 62 Yrs, John Croft - 41 Yrs, William M. Day - 59 Yrs, Edith E. Few - 65 Yrs, Frederick G. Kerley - 70 Yrs, Margaret Lawrence - 25 Yrs, Margaret I. Lawrence - 55 Yrs, Caroline Massey - 68 Yrs, Thomas Mepham - 69 Yrs, Bertram G. Niner - 39 Yrs, William G. Reeves - 53 Yrs, Violet B. Rose - 27 Yrs, Lily A. Smith - 54 Yrs, Harriet R. Tidd - 23 Yrs, Joan L. Timms - 19 Yrs, William Turner - 62 Yrs, Muriel A. Watson - 4 Yrs.’
Following the workshop and the invitation in the Bexhill Observer a few weeks ago for people to suggest names there are now 14 additional names to be considered for inclusion.
The names are:
Charles D. Buckworth-Herne-Soame - 52 Yrs, Anthony J. Cheese - 3 Yrs, Lilian Cockburn - 37 Yrs, Constance E. Collins - 23 Yrs, Leslie R. Curteis - 38 Yrs, Horace Day - 66 Yrs,
Ivy Etteridge - 23 Yrs, Arthur Fenner - 65 Yrs, George Gatey - 66 Yrs, Fred Gosden - 45 Yrs, William J. Harmer - 41 Yrs, Jessie Lucas - 68 Yrs, Arthur E. Mitten - 62 Yrs,
Alice M. M. Washbourne - 66 Yrs.
There is still time to suggest a name if you think that we have missed someone. If you think there is a Bexhill civilian who was killed due to the war (1939-1945) then please let us know and we will of course consider them. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or by writing to Bexhill Museum, Egerton Road, Bexhill-on-Sea, East Sussex, TN39 3HL.