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Memorial Arch

Memorial Arch

The Leas Promenade Road of Remembrance, Folkestone, Kent

Value: £215,000
Duration: 15 Weeks
Contract: JCT intermediate Contract 2011

Background Information;
Following the end of WW1 a public meeting in March 1919 was called in Folkestone to discuss ideas for a local war memorial, it was immediately decided that it should be dedicated not only to those from the town who had given their lives during the war but also to “Folkestone’s part generally in war”. .On the war memorial, it is stated: “In ever grateful memory of the brave men from Folkestone and the many thousands from all parts of the empire who passed this spot on their way to fight in the Great War.” At the base of the memorial is a bronze panel on which, as an Imperial War Museum war website states, “a moving mass of men is suggested in silhouette, and represents the continual flow of men who passed the spot during the war. A few yards away is a brick pillar bearing the words: “During the war, tens of thousands of British soldiers passed along this road on their way to and from the front in France. This stands at the top of the Road of Remembrance, which was renamed in memory of those who had passed down it on their way to the harbour and the waiting troop ships. The original memorial arch was there until 1930 so the new arch will suitably take its place in history.

Walker Construction were proud to have been chosen to carry out this exclusive project for many reasons, Our head office is based in Folkestone employing hundreds of people within Folkestone and the surrounding areas. While the Arch was being constructed to commemorate the 100 year anniversary for WW1 Walker Construction were also celebrating its 50th year in the construction industry and carrying out this project is an honourable way to celebrate our achievement.

The scope of the works was to install a War Memorial in the shape of an arch that was made from stainless steel sections onto counter weighted holding down bolts. Installation of specially designed paving slabs under the arch with a circular compass design with engraved slabs depicting the countries involved in the war and the dates.A memorial dividing wall/planter was also erected between the arch and the adjoining road which has memorial plaques specifically located between the benches. The wall also has speakers installed next to the benches and recordings of war stories, poetry and songs about WW1 is played whilst people rest and enjoy the arch and remember the brave soldiers. Within the arch and surrounding areas LED lights were installed to illuminate the area at night along with 100 manmade diamonds installed underneath the arch that will twinkle and change colour when illuminated to represent 100 tiny stars.

Before and during the project, close collaboration with all parties was essential to achieve the required end product to the specification and satisfaction of everyone involved. We were not just achieving the client’s standards but the public’s acceptance of the arch and the workmanship that has been put into this project must and is second to none. We installed the stone circle with a stone mason on hand to re cut any slabs that were the wrong size and to make sure that all standards and quality were met as well as expectations. To show how important this project is to Folkestone and the country, Prince Harry was the Royal Guest of Honour on the 4th August 2014 who opened the memorial and was accompanied by dignitaries from Whitehall, local MP’s, Walker Construction and the charity “Step Short” who were the driving force behind the project.

Key Benefits;
Carrying out a prestigious project that will stand for many years in our home town of Folkestone.
Many local residents did not know what Walker Construction did, now they do and respect us for this project.
The local community are proud of the monument and it has enhanced the area to the public eye which should in time bring in more tourists and visitors.

Walker Construction are proud to have been part of creating such an iconic memorial that will stand firm for many years so that future generations can remember the sacrifices made by such brave men and women during WW1.

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