Portland Cenotaph

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The Portland Cenotaph is a war memorial located on the Isle of Portland, Dorset, England. It is situated at New Ground, looking down to Underhill of the island and overlooking Chesil Beach, as it sits in front of Portland Heights Hotel. The monument is dedicated to the local soldiers who died during both the First and Second World Wars. It has been a Grade II Listed Monument since May 1993.[1]

History

Portland sent upwards of 1000 men to fight during the Great War. In the years following World War I, the local people of Portland expressed their desire to retain the memory of those who made the supreme sacrifice. However the communities of Underhill and Tophill continually argued that there should be two separate war memorials to honour the dead. In the end, a compromise was reached by placing the memorial where it could be seen by both communities at New Ground.

It was unveiled on 11 November 1926 by ex-Private Crispin - a local ex-soldier who had lost three brothers in the war.[2] The featured title reads "In memory of our gloriovs dead 1914-1918". After World War II, those who died in the war were recorded underneath those from World War I, with the title "And of those who made the supreme sacrifice in the second World War 1939-1945".[3] The memorial records 237 Portland soldiers who had died in World War I, and lists 108 local soldiers who died in World War II.[4]

The memorial is the place of gathering each year for Remembrance Day, and in 2012, local newspaper Dorset Echo reported that more than 400 people gathered at the war memorial for the Portland Royal British Legion service - one of the biggest crowds ever to attend.[5]

HMS Sidon Memorial and Olympic Rings

Nearby to the memorial is another smaller memorial which was erected in 2005 for the men who died in the explosion of a faulty torpedo on board the submarine HMS Sidon (P259) whilst docked alongside Portland Harbour in 1955.[6] In 2012, a sculpture of the Olympic rings, carved to celebrate the summer's sailing events at Weymouth and Portland, was placed close to the memorials. It had been in Weymouth during the games, greeting passengers at the town's railway station.[7]

References

  1. Historic England. "Details from listed building database (1206529)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 21 January 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. http://www.bournemouthecho.co.uk/news/2087649.work_on_cenotaph_starts_in_earnest/
  3. "Fortuneswell, Portland, Dorset". Geoffkirby.co.uk. 11 November 1926. Retrieved 21 January 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4. Wolfgang Buchhorn. "War Memorial - Chesil Beach Viewpoint, Fortuneswell, Portland, Dorset, England". Lostancestors.eu. Retrieved 21 January 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  5. "Portland: Remembrance tribute (From Dorset Echo)". Dorsetecho.co.uk. 12 November 2012. Retrieved 21 January 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  6. "HMS Sidon Memorial 2005". Dorset Submariners. 16 June 2005. Retrieved 21 January 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  7. "Olympic rings sculpture now has a permanent home | West Country (W) - ITV News". Itv.com. Retrieved 21 January 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

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