Second war memorial plan splits County Durham village

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Parish councillors in County Durham have been criticised for plans to spend up to £25,000 on a second war memorial.

The village of Evenwood, near Bishop Auckland, already has a memorial in its main cemetery.

Plans to erect a second in the centre of the village have been met with a 600-name petition urging the cash to be spent on a rundown sports ground.

But parish councillors said another memorial was needed to provide an area for elderly residents.

Evenwood and Barony Parish Council wants the new memorial and a commemorative garden to be built on land off Swan Street in the village.

Two designs have been proposed, with hopes the new memorial can be in place in time for Remembrance Day.

One is for a lectern surrounded by three monoliths with the words "land", "air" and "sea" carved into them.

The other is for a triangular feature representing the land, air and sea services with a wreath around it.

Image caption,
The sports ground is in need of repairs

Parish councillor Stephen Hugill said: "The money comes from Durham County Council.

"It was decided that we could do with a new war memorial which would develop an area in the village to make it more pleasant for the retired people in the area."

John Teasdale of Evenwood Cricket Club, which uses the sports ground, said: "The only money the council have spent in the last 15 years is on grilles for the windows.

"If we had the same attitude as them to facilities for local people, then we would have walked away too."

A final decision on the plan will be made after planning issues are resolved.

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