D&G MSP Joins Last Kings Own Scottish Borderers Colonel to Highlight War Memorial Fund

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Dumfrieshire MSP Joan McAlpine joined the last commanding officer of the Kings Own Scottish Borderers to promote the restoration of war memorials.

Col Rob Jeffries led the historic regiment on its last march in its 317 year history in Edinburgh in 2006.

The two met at a Scottish Parliament reception hosted by former First Minister Alex Salmond to promote the War Memorials Trust.

As First Minister, Mr Salmond allocated £1 million to the Trust to restore memorials in Scotland during the centenary commemorations of World War One.

The South Scotland MSP is urging other local communities to take advantage of the £500,000 still available.

The Fund has already given grants to fund the restoration of memorials in Moffat and Dunscore.

The MSP said:

“It was fascinating to meet Col Jeffries who occupies a unique place in history as the last commanding officer of KOSB. Many people in the south served with the KOSB and indeed sacrificed their lives with the regiment so it was very fitting that he was in attendance.

“It is important that communities all over Scotland have the ability to renovate their memorials. They should remember that the fund is not just for stone memorials. Many workplaces, schools and other organisations crated memorials to those who have served and fallen, for example paintings and carvings. These are often forgotten but are eligible too. We saw an excellent example in the parliament to the staff of Edinburgh’s Caledonian Hotel who served in WW1. It was a beautiful painting that was only recently rediscoved in a cupboard and loving restored by a professional conservator with help from the trust.

“The greatest achievement of this scheme is that so many more memorials around Scotland are now in a condition that we would expect to respectfully commemorate the centenary of the sacrifice of those who fell in the Great War and conflicts thereafter.”

To find out more about the Centenary Memorials Restoration Fund please visit: www.warmemorials.org/grants

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