The ARMY APPRENTICE ... remember with pride

Earlier News

May 2011

Great success with the Commemorative Tablet scheme

Many thanks for all your donations made through the tablet scheme. A total of £45,000 plus has been received to-date (All 531 spaces) as a result of the scheme. This represents over 70% of the total donations received so far. The Tablet scheme has now closed.

Fund reaches £63,300

Thank you also, for all the payments made through a general donation. We are now making early draw-down payments for costs and construction etc. Value Added Tax (VAT) has been successfully claimed on these early payments, from the Memorial Grants Scheme. Gift Aid responses have yet to be received.

The Fund still needs your support. It will remain open for the foreseeable future in the expectation of an agreement with the National Memorial Arboretum, to provide long term maintainance of the memorial. This will require an up-front endowment payment expected to be in excess of £20,000.

Work behind the scenes

Stonemasons  have completed the concrete base to support the granite slabs and have just added the base extension for the tablets. Intermittant sitework will proceed during the course of the next three months. Early work will include a start on the granite tablets back at their base in Suffolk, which has the plan looking like a huge jigsaw puzzle - hence the need to cap at an early date, to complete the final plan and make all the components.

Inscriptions detailed on the various key peices of granite have now been agreed after much deliberation, together with the use of the AAS Queens crown cap badge on the main granite piece.

Commemorative tablet lists have been collated and administered by Keith Thrower (60B Arb) and verified by Ted Cooper ( 61C Car) and submitted to the stonemason for ultimate 'digestion' and conversion to granite. This scheme is now closed.

The Dedication Day Video will be produced by Barry Hunter (Chep) and his wife Mary, through their own Video Production Co from Newton Abbott, Devon. They have given their time and expense to the AANM Charity. DVD's will be available following the event at nominal cost.
Gordon Bonner (49B Arb) and Mo Hope (59B Arb) are coordinating this.

The Evening dinner before Dedication Day at the Cedar Tree Hotel, Rugely, on the 6th September, is filling up well and over 60 people have booked up for this. This will be an informal gathering of visitors and the Trustees. Colin Weir (55A Chep) is organizing this and may be booked through printing out the pdf form below and submitting it, together with payment to Colin.

Memorial update

We now have a little under four months to go before Dedication Day, on September the 7th. All the many and varied pieces of the jigsaw are now starting to come together.

At the onset of our plans, the Trustees estimated that we would have to invite about 150 of the representatives of the four sponsoring Old Boys Associations and Corps that had links to the Army Apprentice Scheme. Also those individuals that had made significant donations to the appeal fund, as well as the Civic dignitaries of the Towns and Borough's that hosted the Schools and Colleges, not forgetting the participating Padres and the Piper, all of whom are ex boys. The final number now comes in at just over 110.

We are very grateful to the R.E.M.E. Regimental Colonel, Col. Martin L. Court for sanctioning a quintet from the R.E.M.E. Staff Band, stationed at Arborfield, to accompany the two chosen hymns during the dedication service,and for providing music in the Hospitality Tent after the ceremony is completed.

 We are also indebted to the R.E.M.E. Corps ASM, WO1 Stuart Jones, for arranging to have a small group of uniformed regular soldiers to act as stewards etc on the day, which should all help to make things run smoothly.

Work is well in hand on the memorial site, as can be seen from the photograph. The main concrete base was tipped last October, and in recent days this has been added to by laying the outer concrete ring onto which will be placed the individual named commemorative tablets. The surrounding ground has been levelled and re-seeded to give it the main summer months to grow . I can also report that our stonemason has received the main block of rough Black Granite from India that will form the monolith on the memorial and this is currently being worked on.

As can be seen elsewhere on the web site, the commemorative tablet sale is now fully subscribed, with all 531 available spaces taken up and purchased by ex A/T's, their families and friends, as a lasting tribute to all those that shared the life shaping experience of being an Army Apprentice.

Just a reminder to everyone who may be in the area on the night of the 6th of September (the night before D-Day), about the dedication dinner being held at The Cedar Tree Hotel, on the Rugeley road. We currently have 60 plus persons signed up to attend the dinner night and as of now, all the Trustees will be there to celebrate the virtual completion of the project, so if you wish to join us, then please contact Colin Weir, on the PDF form that can be downloaded from this site.

 Maurice (Mo) Hope, 59B Arb, A Coy. - AANM Trustee

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April 19th 2011