War memorial is approved as plans take a step forward

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An ambitious project to build a £25,000 village war memorial has taken a step closer after the plans were given planning permission.

The proposals, which were submitted by the Colne Engaine War Memorial Committee, were approved by Braintree District Council at the end of last month.

It means the village, which is near Halstead, can press ahead with plans for a designated war memorial to honour former residents who lost their lives in past conflicts.

“It is fantastic news that we have permission and that is largely due to our architect, Philip Morphey, who has given his time for free and has been a godsend,” said Spike Townsend, chairman of the war memorial committee.

“Now we can concentrate solely on the fundraising.”

Once built the memorial will provide a place for community remembrance in the village’s recreation ground in Station Road.

A string of events to help take the committee to its fundraising target have already been held, a buy-a-brick scheme is being run and more events are in the pipeline.

“We have large scale support in the village and have quite an aggressive fundraising scheme,” said Mr Townsend.

“There are auctions, charity collections and a 1940s pop-up restaurant is planned.”

More than £2,500 has been raised for the project, which it is hoped will be complete before the anniversary of the end of the First World War.

“The cut off is November 2018, but would like it done before then,” Mr Townsend added.