The Tolson and Ravensknowle Heritage Memorial Garden is a place to honour the sacrifice of Huddersfield service men and women who have died in the service of their country.
Many perished in the First World War and the Second World War. However since 1945 local men and women of the Armed Services have taken part in many operations and conflicts across the world, often as part of UN, NATO or other international coalitions. These actions have ranged from war to peacekeeping, from humanitarian assistance to fighting terrorism, from the jungles of Malaya to the storms of the South Atlantic, from the seaport of Aden to the streets of Northern Ireland.
We not only remember those who have died but think of those they leave behind, wives, husbands, partners, parents, children and colleagues who loved them and who live with the pain and consequences of their loss every day.
This is a place of remembrance and contemplation but also of celebration of those who gave so much and those who continue to serve so that we can enjoy our lives and the beauty that surrounds us.
The Opening of the Heritage Memorial Garden – 10th October 2014
The Heritage Memorial Garden was opened by Mr Ian Fillan, President of the Huddersfield Veterans in the presence of the Mayor and Mayoress of Kirklees. The sun shone and the Hade Edge Band played. Ann Denham welcomed guests who included Huddersfield veterans, former service personnel, and relatives of service personnel, sea Cadets, police officers and Friends of Tolson & Ravensknowle. The last post was played, a two minutes silence was observed and reveille was played.
The guest were them invited to explore the garden and the information panels. Peter Maris, the sculptor attended with plans for the proposed timeline and sculpture. Afternoon tea was available for all in the Woodhead Lecture Hall.
Remembrance Day – 11th November 2014
At 11am on Tuesday 11th November there was a short commemoration service in the Garden. Two wreathes were laid and the last post was played. This is to be an annual event.
The Dedication of the Garden – 10th May 2015
The garden was open but there was still a lot of work to be done. It proceeded slowly during winter and spring. However on a lovely day with poppies at the foot of the sculpture blowing in the wind we held the Dedication of the Garden.
The Rt Rev Dr Gibbs led the Dedication of the Garden and the Deputy Mayor Cllr Paul Kane unveiled the sculpture by Peter Maris. The sculpture is based on the theme of wars and conflict and reflects ideas of peace, memories and the museum’s history. Peter explained he had consulted with different groups. Three pupils from Moor End Academy, Aisha Iqbal, Imad Kazi and Weronika Osmoska, spoke about their ideas that contributed to the sculpture.
The idea of having three seats in the shape of a poppy came from a pupil at Almondbury High School. The poppies were made by the pupils at Moor End Academy. In the Garden there is a timeline listing the major conflicts since 1945. There are three community gardens, one being maintained by King James pupils, one by Netherhall pupils and the third by the ‘Friends of Tolson & Ravensknowle’. The main body of the garden is being maintained by the Sea Cadets. At the Dedication Leading Cadet Bradley Mays spoke about why it was important to maintain the garden. There are three information boards in the Garden.
There are a series of events in the Garden this Summer.