Town council to launch public consultation on Covid memorial

Downham Market Town Council. Picture: Ian Burt

Downham Market Town Council. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Ian Burt

A Norfolk town council will launch a public consultation on plans to create a Covid memorial for the community.

Downham Market town councillors discussed the idea at a full council meeting on Tuesday, February 2 where it was suggested the memorial garden could be used.

Rachel Hepworth suggested planting a memorial tree rather than having a stone memorial.

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Downham Market Town Council will launch a public consultation on a Covid memorial in the town.

She said: "It's a beautiful thing. Trees can last hundreds and hundreds of years, if someone particularly wants to commemorate a loved one then there could be a little plaque at the bottom of the tree."

Ben Molyneux-Hetherington also suggested having a space around it but asked for the idea to include public consultation to allow the council to see what people in the town would like in order for it to be "something that is coordinated by the town council but from the community".

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Frank Daymond mentioned there had been a memorial rose planted in the garden previously and someone had taken it.

He said: "Someone decided it looked better in their garden. I'm a bit of a pessimist when it comes to things like that."

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He added: "What about the Spanish Flu? There's still people alive who have dealt with that."

But deputy mayor Jenny Groom said Covid has been a "life changing event" for a lot of people and welcomed the idea.

She said: "I actually think we ought to find a new space and ask the borough if they could give us a bit of a space.

"The memorial garden is a lovely space and is a memorial for the wars and I think that's good, but why stick a tree in there as an add on?

"It's not just about the people who have died and have had it, it's that whole life changing way of living and working for everybody and I think we need to actively consult, work with the community and see if we can find a space to make another garden."

Councillors voted in favour of launching a four-week consultation on the council's website which will ask people for ideas before bringing it back to the council.

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