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Royal Wootton Bassett
Town Council

We honour those who serve

Royal Wootton Bassett Town Council

We honour those who serve

t: 01793 850222


t: 01793 850222


Marlowe Way Memorial

The Town Council are pleased to announce the completion of work to erect a new memorial at Marlowe Way, see photos (Click on images to enlarge). Forever Poppy Group have provided the Council a copy of their Final Accounts.

A timeline from when the original piece of art collapsed in 2017 to the present-day installation of two Tommy Figures and flagpole is published below:-

Communication – 10 November 2023 – Tommy Figures & Flagpole installation completed, plus landscaping.

Press Release – 2 March 2023 – Relating to Full Council Meeting 9 February 2023 resolving the Forever Poppy Group proposal to install 2 donated ‘Tommy’ Figures on the plinth until such time as the town decide on an alternative structure and funding for the alternative is in place.

Full Council meeting 9 December 2021 – members received update (from the Replacement Poppy Meeting of 23 November 2021).

Replacement Poppy Update Meeting 23 November 2021 –  Cllr Steve Walls, Tom Patterson, Town Council Officer Michelle Temple & Kelly Warren in attendance. Tom Patterson confirmed current timescale to complete of 18 months.

Press Release – 2 November 2021 – Relating to Full Council meeting of Thursday 7 October 2021 PRIVATE SESSION concluding the two groups offer; Royal Wootton Bassett Sculpture Campaign Project Team led by Martin Lansdowne (representing Mark Humphrey, Original Artist of Stone Poppy) and Forever Poppy Group led by Tom Patterson. Resolved to continue with Forever Poppy Group as the other group had not complied with Council’s Donation Policy adopted at Full Council on 25 March 2021.

Statement from Mayor, Cllr Steve Walls – 19 July 2021–  Response to Facebook post by Mark Humphrey to supply replacement poppy free of charge.

Press Release (Town Clerk) – 7 April 2021 – Royal Wootton Bassett Sculpture Campaign Project Team presentation to Full Council on 25 March 2021, to install new bronze poppy. Additional information required and legal advice sought as to whether the land in question could be leased to any group/organisation.

Full Council Meeting 11 February 2021 – Discussed draft donation application form and policy produced by Bevirs Law. Town Clerk delegated to amend policy to be clearer and bring to next meeting for ratification.

Full Council Meeting 10 December 2020 – PRIVATE SESSION (Cllr Tom Patterson declared interest, Cllr Marion Sweet had resigned from group, week previous) – Discussed letter received from RWB Forever Poppy Campaign and posts on social media. Resolved that support given to Stone Poppy Community Group (led by Tom Patterson) at Full Council on 8 October 2020 could not be rescinded for a period of 6 months under Town Council Standing Orders and to create a policy with detailed requirements that any group must satisfy before approaching the Town Council.

Full Council meeting 8 October 2020 – PRIVATE SESSION– Discuss the process to install the proposed Bronze Poppy from the Stone Poppy Community Group (led by Tom Patterson) Peter Shah (Bevirs Law) attended and advised accordingly. Copy of structural engineer’s report, insurance details, photographs of poppy miniature received. Resolved to accept donated funds (once all monies have been raised) to enter a contract with a sculptor to make the bronze poppy and install on plinth. Council was paying £1,400 per annum to store the broken stone poppy. Resolved for Officers to contact the artist Mark Humphrey and arrange collection.

Full Council Meeting 14 February 2019 – Town Clerk reported the results of the public consultation article published in Community Magazine. 67 residents replied from 5000 households that receive a copy, happy to see some form of poppy but not want the cost to be borne by their Council Tax (precept). Tom Patterson (resident) suggested and members resolved to accept his offer that the community take project forward and he would take ownership of crowd funding. Cllrs Rob Anstee, Marion Sweet and Steve Watts to serve on the Committee, any proposal to be brought back to Council for consideration.

Full Council Meeting 4 October 2018 update from public consultation meeting held on 23 September 2018. Resolved to include further consultation in the Winter Edition of Community Magazine. Further resolved to publish Plowden and Smith & Tobin Engineers reports on website.

Public Meeting 23 September 2018 held at Wiltshire Hotel, 80 people attended, including original artist Mark Humphrey. Indicated at the meeting a fully supported framework poppy could be manufactured between £50k to £60k. Decision to hold further public consultation engagement.

File Note end of Full Council Meeting on 19 July 2018, agreed to hold public meeting.

Town Council had insurance for £250k – 21 February 2018 – Cunningham Lindsey issued a letter on behalf of the insurers, declining to deal with our claim as ‘damage to the structure caused by its own collapse or cracking’. Investigation included engineers report issued by Tobin Consulting Engineers (UK) commissioned by Mark Humphrey. A further report commissioned by the Council from Plowden & Smith, stone specialist, concluded that the ‘design of the poppy had put this stone under tremendous tensile stress with no obvious support’ and in their opinion ‘ design should not be repaired or re-manufactured. If the object is to be repaired and reinstated, a complete redesign using a masonry support should be manufactured to support and cradle the stone using the compressive strength of masonry to advantage. The alternative would be to manufacture the piece in bronze by those with suitable knowledge and experience of the material’.

Stone Poppy Collapsed – 19 October 2017 captured by CCTV.

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