England

Statues plan for three former Devon and Dorset Army regiments

The models of the three bronze sculptures which will represent the Devonshire Regiment, the Dorset Regiment and the Devon and Dorsets
Image caption Each sculpture will represent one of the former regiments in action

Three statues honouring the Devonshire, Dorset and combined Devon and Dorset Army regiments are being planned for the National Memorial Arboretum.

It is hoped models of three soldiers - each depicting one of the old regiments - will be cast in bronze and displayed at the Arboretum in Staffordshire.

The Devonshire and Dorset Regimental Association said a "substantial amount" of the £140,000 cost had been raised.

A fundraising appeal has now been launched to raise the remaining money.

Image copyright Paddy King-Fretts/BBC
Image caption Former soldier Paddy King-Fretts, who served in the 2nd Battalion Dorset Regiment, said the statues "mean a lot"

Mike Richardson, of the Devonshire and Dorset Regimental Association, said the sculptures would also be a "salute" to the families of those people who served in the three disbanded regiments, "not only in the small operations during so-called peace time but in the two devastating world wars".

Paddy King-Fretts, who served in the 2nd Battalion Dorset Regiment, completing three tours in Northern Ireland, said the statues "mean a lot".

"I've been to the National Memorial Arboretum three times and the names of my soldiers that fell are engraved on the walls there, but it's nice to have something to compliment that and for the rest of the nation to see and ponder about," he said.

Image copyright Ian S
Image caption It is hoped the models will be cast in bronze and displayed at the National Memorial Arboretum in Alrewas, Staffordshire

The sculptures will be created in Andover, Hampshire, before moving to the Arboretum in Alrewas - the UK's national site of remembrance.

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