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Campaign to get Cornish kids to adopt war graves
7:00am Sunday 18th May 2014 in Cornwall
Falmouth’s MP Sarah Newton has visited the town’s war graves to launch a new campaign to encourage Cornish pupils to commemorate the men and women who gave their lives in the two world wars.
Mrs Newton visited a number of war graves at Falmouth Cemetery, cared for by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission (CWGC) This was established in 1917 and maintains the graves of 1.7million men and women of the Commonwealth forces who died in the two world wars.
Mrs Newton was joined on her visit by regional CWGC supervisor, Ian Thornett, and Falmouth Cemetery gardener, Mike Austin.
The soldiers, sailors and airman buried there include Able Seaman William Savage, who was posthumously awarded the Victoria Cross in 1942 for his actions during the raid on St Naizaire.
Mrs Newton said: ‘‘It was a privilege to be able to visit the heroes lying at rest in Falmouth Cemetery and to thank the gardener there, and the CWGC, for their care and kindness in maintaining the graves.
“On the centenary of the outbreak of the Great War it is the right to bring to mind the men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice in the devastating wars that blighted the twentieth century.
“The government has launched a range of projects to help school children lead these commemorations and I was pleased to write to all schools in my constituency earlier this year to bring these materials to their attention.
“The CWGC is participating in these projects and has now launched its own virtual cemetery education portal to help teachers and children learn more about the fallen heroes whose graves the CWGG commission cares for.
“I will be writing again to schools to bring this great new resource to their attention and to inform them of the surprisingly large number of CWGC graves that can be found in local churchyards and cemeteries.
“I am hoping that schools can ‘adopt’ particular graves, researching the history of the individual commemorated and laying flowers.
“It seems fitting to commemorate the sacrifices of previous generations by asking our youngest to tell their stories anew.’’
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