Six life-sized aluminium silhouettes of British soldiers have been installed in Epping Forest to commemorate the heroes of World War One.
As well as honouring this year’s 100th anniversary of the end of the Great War, the soldiers will become part of the City of London Corporation’s new interactive World War I exhibition at The View in Epping Forest, its free visitor centre in Chingford. The exhibition captures the story of the Epping Forest Keepers who served in the First World War and runs until 30 November.
The exhibition includes a Family Story Tree where visitors can add a beloved family memoir and a photograph of any relatives who served, survived or died in the war, as a tribute. There will also be activities, historic poems, books and pictures centred around the Family Story Tree.
Epping Forest, which is managed by the City of London Corporation, is London and Essex’s largest open space. Run as a registered charity and covering around 2,400 hectares, the site attracts over 4.5 million visits every year.As part of the First World War Centenary Partnership, the City of London Corporation teamed up with charities Remembered and the Armed Forces Covenant Fund Trust to install the Tommies in the City and the Forest.The six-foot-high Tommies are part of Remembered’s nationwide art installation campaign called ‘There But Not There’ with all proceeds going to armed forces and mental health charities.The silhouettes, accessible for everyone to visit, have been placed at:
- High Beech, where Helen Thomas, the wife of the War Poet Edward Thomas, recorded their fateful farewell
- Pole Hill, where a soldier stands lookout over a former gun emplacement
- At The View visitor centre as part of its World War One exhibition
- Guarding three War memorials on Epping Forest Land at Wanstead, Loughton and Epping
Philip Woodhouse, Chairman of the City of London Corporation’s Epping Forest and Commons Committee, said:“We are proud to be part of this nationwide campaign honouring those who made the greatest sacrifices for this country.
“We want all Londoners to feel part of this historic moment. It is important that local people should feel included in the centenary commemorations, as we mark one hundred years since the end of the war.”
The City of London Corporation protects and conserves 18 major green spaces in London and south east England – including two ancient woodlands - and over 200 smaller ones in the Square Mile.
They include important wildlife habitats, sites of scientific interest and national nature reserves. They are protected from being built on by special legislation.
The City of London Corporation funds green spaces across London. Its green spaces, most of which are charitable trusts, are run at little or no cost to the communities that they serve. They are funded by over £29million a year from the City Corporation, together with donations, sponsorship, grants and income generated on site.
Laura Simpson, Media Officer, City of London Corporation
T: 020 7332 3654
Notes to editors
About the City of London Corporation:
The City of London Corporation is the governing body of the Square Mile dedicated to a vibrant and thriving City, supporting a diverse and sustainable London within a globally-successful UK. www.cityoflondon.gov.uk
The 18 green spaces run by the City of London Corporation are:
1. Hampstead Heath
2. Highgate Wood
3. Golders Hill Park
4. Queen’s Park
5. Epping Forest
6. Wanstead Flats
7. Wanstead Park
8. City of London Cemetery and Crematorium
9. West Ham Park
10. Burnham Beeches
11. Stoke Common
12. Ashtead Common
13. Coulsdon Common
14. Farthing Downs
15. Kenley Common
17. Spring Park
18. West Wickham Common