Plans unveiled for memorial at the Wish Tower

The proposed war memorial at the Wish Tower SUS-150511-103934001
The proposed war memorial at the Wish Tower SUS-150511-103934001

An artist’s impression of a state of the art war memorial to replace the one knocked down when the Wish Tower Restaurant was demolished has been unveiled.

The image shows the memorial within the grounds of the historic Wish Tower site and lists the names of those who died in the town as well as paying tribute to the sacrifices made by people living in Eastbourne during the Second World War.

A public appeal to help meet the cost of the memorial and installation will be launched soon.

A campaign to build a new civilian war memorial for the 174 residents killed in the bombing raids in Eastbourne during the Second World War got underway some time ago.

Behind the scenes talks have been held with Eastbourne Borough Council, Historic England, the Duke of Devonshire, Eastbourne Society and Friends of the Wish Tower to find a suitable site and design.

Formal Ancient Monument Approval must also be gained in addition to a full structural engineer’s report and Chris Butler, a local archaeologist who lost one of his grandparents in one of the bombing raids, has been engaged to carry out all the archaeological work.

A spokesperson for the campaign group said they hoped people would dig deep when the fundraising appeal was launched.

“Our wishes are that all generations of local residents should remember the historic fortitude of those residents who lived though the terrible raids and the building of this monument should be supported by all age groups,” said the spokesperson.

“Eastbourne was the most heavily bombed town in the south east.

“We hope this appeal will be ready to go during this, the 75th anniversary of the first bombs falling on Eastbourne.”

Further details will be released in the coming weeks.

The original Wish tower War memorial was a sunlounge and memorial stone at the Wish Tower Restaurant provided for by the Foyle family who helped pay for the original building as a lasting memorial.

John Foyle, the son of Gilbert Foyle, who behind the financial gesture after the Second World War ended, was fiercely against the demolition of the sunlounge, which had to be knocked down when the adjoininng Wish Tower Restaurant fell in to a derelict state.