Recent plans released by the Council for the design of the proposed Wish Tower Restaurant, show that there would be site overlap with the memorial and the view from the proposed memorial would be severely obstructed. This means the memorial project will have to be put on hold until there can be further negotiations with the Council.
About the Eastbourne Civilian War Memorial Trust
We seek to establish a civilian war memorial at the Wish Tower, Eastbourne in memory of the people killed and injured in the bombing raids on the town during the war of 1939-45 and in memory of the fortitude of residents during those years. The former Wish Tower Sun Lounge and Café, above, was established in 1961 as a memorial to those who lost their lives, but due to structural problems this was demolished by Eastbourne Borough Council in 2012. The Town has been without a visible memorial to the bombing victims ever since.
The Council has now given planning permission for the memorial pictured here which will be a continuation of the wall of the Wish Tower moat. The memorial will be of granite and the names of those who lost their lives in the bombing raids will be etched into the stone.
Situated in the grounds of the Wish Tower it is hoped that the area surrounding the tower will be designated a Peace Garden.
The Professional Team of Supporters
Creating a memorial on such an historic and significant site has required professional skills and patience from architects Wendy and Tara Thomas. Both Wendy and her daughter Tara spent their early years in Eastbourne and have given their services. They twice had to redesign the memorial to meet the requirements of Historic England.
Chris Butler has carried out excavations on the site and has given his services as a tribute to two of his relatives killed in a bombing raid when their house at 33, Green Street received a direct hit.
Thanks also to graphic designer Nicholas Howells, accountant George Message and to Julian and Emily Perrott of BarkWeb Ltd who have created and maintained the website.
In advance of the public appeal for funding, the trustees of the John Jackson Charitable Trust have pledged a most generous donation of £20,000. Our grateful thanks to the trustees, all local residents, Margaret Downey, Crispin Freeman and Andrew Leaper.
Between the Summer of 1940 and Spring 1944 in Eastbourne there were...
98 bombing raids
671 high explosives were dropped
Of the civilian casualties, numbering over 1,100, 174 people died, 443 were seriously injured and 489 slightly hurt. 475 houses were destroyed and 1,000 seriously damaged.
Many town centre businesses were damaged or destroyed, and a number of seafront hotels were also hit.