Memorial service and new interpretation board pay tribute to First World War heroine Edith Cavell
PUBLISHED: 16:09 12 October 2018 | UPDATED: 16:50 12 October 2018
A Norfolk nurse who paid the ultimate sacrifice by helping soldiers reach safety in the First World War is to be remembered at a special service.
Born in Swardeston in 1865, Edith Cavell is remembered and celebrated for helping to save the lives of more than 200 allied soldiers from German-occupied Belgium during the First World War.
However, for her actions she was arrested, accused of treason and found guilty of ‘assisting the enemy’ before being executed by a German firing squad on October 12, 1915.
Now, at an annual memorial service held just one day after the anniversary of her death, her heroism will be remembered with a new interpretation board highlighting her story.
Designed by Nick Miller, who runs the website, edithcavell.org.uk, the aim of the new board is to ensure all who pass by the statue of Nurse Cavell outside Norwich Cathedral are aware of the incredible sacrifice she made.
Photos of four of the soldiers Nurse Cavell helped also feature on the board.
They include Colonel Dudley Boger and Sergeant Fred Meachin, both of the 1st Battalion Cheshire Regiment and who were the first two British soldiers to be helped by Nurse Cavell on November 1 1914, and Private R W (Billy) Mapes and Sergeant David Jesse Tunmore who were both from the 1st Battalion Norfolk Regiment.
The Revd Dr Peter Doll, Canon Librarian and Vice Dean, who will lead the service, said: “The people of Norfolk have always treasured the memory of Edith Cavell as an ordinary local girl who did extraordinary work in the service of those in need.
“The annual Commemoration Service at her grave is a special opportunity for the community to give thanks for her witness.
“The new interpretation board in Tombland will give new generations and our many visitors an opportunity to understand why Edith remains so special to us.”
The memorial service will take place at 11am on Saturday (13) at Edith Cavell’s grave and will be immediately followed by the unveiling of the interpretation board outside Erpingham Gate.
The new interpretation board has been sponsored by Norwich Cathedral, the Bishop of Norwich, Maids Head Hotel, Norwich High School for Girls and CARE UK’s Cavell Court care home in Cringleford.