1,000 signatures reached
To: Chepstow Town Council
Stop Chepstow Town Council removing Able Seaman Williams Gun
We request that Chepstow Town Council immediately stop their current and any future discussions relating to the permanent removal of Able Seaman Williams gun monument. We request they, with haste, repair the gun to its former glory and bring forward specialist cleaning works of our war memorial in accordance with Item 89 from the September 2016 which we also request a copy of (and a FOI request has been made for same).
Photo credit: Chepstow Beacon
Why is this important?
At the Chepstow Town Council meeting on 12 September 2018, a discussion was had about the possible removal of the gun tribute to Able Seaman Williams. Two town councillors openly questioned the connection of the memorial gun to Chepstow Town and a third called for a vote, on removing the gun there and then. Fortunately, a vote was not taken on the night.
The discussion point was not on the formal Agenda nor captured in the Minutes with the Town Council dismissing the discussion as conversation.
The memorial gun was gifted to the town by King George V to mark the outstanding bravery and in memory of William Charles Williams who was also awarded the Victoria Cross posthumously. Relatives of Able Seaman Williams still reside in the Chepstow area today.
Chepstow Town Council lists that one of its roles on behalf of the community is to undertake 'the regular cleaning of the Town's War Memorial' presumably the Cenotaph and memorial gun. Given the current state of disrepair to both, it is clear the Town Council have failed in this regard.
In minutes dated September 2016, Action 88 - a resolution was made to accept two quotations which had been sought for the specialist repairs and cleaning, Action 89 provided a full report to be tabled at the meeting on the memorial - requests for this report (89) have been made but not yet provided.
Further action has happened since, and after enquiries were made this week, it was confirmed that specialist cleaning will not take place until March 2019. There has been no confirmation however on when the repair work will be undertaken on the gun which gives residents cause for concern.
We the undersigned, are outraged that the Town Council is even considering, without any public consultation, removing such an important, historical structure and vehemently oppose any attempt to remove or move the gun. And we are outraged that the Town Council has not undertaken its duties in respect to the war memorial particularly given that this year sees the 100 year anniversary of the end of WW1.
The plight of the gun and it's dire state was highlighted in the Chepstow Beacon on 2 November.
How it will be delivered
Direct to the Town Council at their November meeting.