New war memorial: What it means to people of Norwich
The people of Norwich today told what Norwich's new Memorial Gardens means to them.
Ray Drewery, 79, from Thorpe is retired and a member of the Royal Navy Association. He said: 'The Memorial Gardens re-opening is most appreciated as a member of the Royal Navy Association. It was quite a mess before and didn't look like what it should do; it's now beautiful.'
George Caldwell, 70, retired from Norwich said: 'Since I've been in Norwich there has been an outcry about the area. All those men, women and children who lost their lives and they couldn't have a decent memorial. It was full of beer cans and mess; it was really let go. I love it up here now. There were lots of arguments about the money that was spent but you have to remember the boys and girls who died.'
Roger Campbell, 60, from Suffolk Square in Norwich works part-time as a cleaner. He said: 'It has cost a lot of money. It looks pretty good, but it may not in a week's time. I have lived in Norwich all my life; it's an improvement. People will be feeding the pigeons so there will be chip paper everywhere; they haven't put any litter bins in there.'
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Carmen Pound, 72, is retired and originally from Spain but now lives in Heartsease. She said: 'I think it's really good. People died for the young generation. It's sad that the young have forgotten; I was disgusted at the state it used to be in. It should be appreciated; it's lovely now. It's a beautiful, friendly city; even though I don't from come here it makes me proud to live here.'
Paul Hawkins, 49, lorry driver from Norwich said: 'The amount of money spent on it; I don't think much of it. I'm not that impressed; it's a rush job.'
Pam Nall, 63, is retired and from Norwich. She said: 'I like it; it will look lovely when it opens. I suspect too much was spent on it. It could have been spent on something better; but it must mean a lot to the older people.'
Hayley Townshend, 41, is from Norwich and works in the bakery in Sainsbury's. She said: 'I agree with it being done but not spending that much.'
Col. Peter Robinson, 71, case worker for the Soldiers, Sailors and Airmen Families Association (SSAFA) from Norwich said: 'This isn't my memorial; mine is in Yorkshire. To individuals who know people who died here it will mean a great deal. It also shows that the local authorities show some respect for what those brave men and women did for us; it's very important to show respect. It enhances the city even from an architectural point of view. It used to be a dreadful hole.'
Jessica Woodhouse, 29, from Horsford in Norwich is a Project Officer. She said: 'It's really important for people of the city especially for the veterans. They've campaigned really hard to get it. The statue is amazing; it captures the essence of what people think of it.'
Adam Hollings, 26, support worker from Norwich said: 'I think it makes the place look nice. I just hope the young people will respect it as it has a lot of history and it means a lot to a lot of people. It used to be full of drug addicts and now it should be a place that's used to show respect for the people who fought for this country.'
Elizabeth Brown, 74, is retired and from Earlham in Norwich. She said: 'It will be lovely as long as the undesirables don't spoil it.'
Emily Ray, 20, is a student studying Literature and History at the UEA. She said: 'I think it's important and a nice gesture. I think the cost of it is a bit extortionate. Not to discredit what they did, but something more organic and cheaper could have been done.'
Chris Joslin, 65, is a senior citizen from Fakenham. He said: 'I think they have done a good job, as long as it doesn't get vandals that don't appreciate it. I hope it doesn't get abused. We've got to remember them somehow; a memorial is a good thing.'
Nick Little, 29, is a librarian from Norwich. He said: 'I think it's brilliant to have a war memorial. I can't believe how long it took but I'm sure they had their reasons. The sculptures are nice and it's good to see new art in the city as well. This is important if Norwich wants to keep its place as a city that is known for a culture.'
Sandra Gamboa, 53, is a bar manager for a military club and used to live in Norwich but now lives in Oklahoma City. She said: 'I think it's good. I remember visiting there when I used to live here. It looks nice; I just hope that it's looked after.'
Abbi Bramble, 26, is self-employed and from Norwich. She said: 'I think it's good to have a memorial garden so we can show respect for those who fought.'