Tommy sculpture is unveiled in South Shields in tribute to those who served in the First World War
A towering Tommy silhouette was unveiled at Haven Point in South Shields, on Friday, July 19, to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Peace Day and the end of the First World War.
Peace Day 1919, marked the end of the First World War and saw communities across the country come together to celebrate this momentous day.
The sacrifice made by those who served was remembered, as Councillor Norman Dick officially unveiled the statue at the dedication service, attended by High Sheriff of Tyne and Wear, Lorna Moran OBE, along with members of the Royal British Legion and former military personnel.
Gunners from the 205 Battery Royal Artillery, were also there to mark the occasion, with members of the 8th Rifle Battalion and Durham Light Infantry.
The figure is part of the ‘There But Not There’ project, a national art installation which represents the fallen British and Commonwealth First World War soldiers within the communities they left behind.
The bespoke figure is the only 9ft Tommy outside of London, and was funded by BT South Tyneside.
Coun Dick, who was a veteran himself, said: “I’m very proud to unveil this statue of a Tommy, to commemorate the 100 years since the end of the First World War.
“All my family were veterans, my two grandparents were in the First World War, and we lost an uncle, so it means a lot to me, and it means a lot to the town, so the children are brought up to remember the sacrifice that was given.”
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He added: “This silhouette is another way that we can place on record our thanks to past and current members of the Armed Forces and encourage our younger generations to never forget the sacrifices they made so that they can enjoy freedom today.”
Councillor Ed Malcolm, Chairman of South Tyneside Armed Forces Forum, said: "The impact of the First World War has shaped the UK with most people being connected to the war in one way or another. We were keen to have a permanent memorial installed to honour the brave men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice for their country and we believe Tommy is the perfect fit.”