Here is an interesting story about the DLI Memorial

VETERANS have announced a date for the unveiling of a permanent memorial to the sacrifices of one of the country’s most famous military regiments.

 DLI trustee Brigadier Robert “Bob” Macgregor-Oakford
 with the clay model of the statue

Campaigners spoke as they gave their stamp of approval to a larger-than-life-sized clay model of a Durham Light Infantry (DLI) bugler which will be cast into a bronze and set on a plinth at the National Memorial Arboretum, in Staffordshire.

The memorial will be unveiled at a service at 2.30pm on Sunday, July 22.

And campaigners have signalled their determination to continue the momentum of their successful fundraising drive to pay for a duplicate statue to be erected at a site, yet to be determined, in Durham City.

“Apart from a few tiny alternations to make sureeverything was spot on – and they were like the widthof his bootlaces – we were delighted with it.”

Brigadier Robert Macgregor-OakfordDLI Memorial Appeal co-ordinator Colonel Arthur Charlton, who along with DLI trustee Brigadier Robert “Bob” Macgregor-Oakford visited the studio of Alan Beattie Herriot to see the model, said they were “delighted”.

 He said: “To finally see what originally had been a figment of the imagination in reality was quite something.

“When we walked into the studio, where the clay sculpture was made, it was very much a case of, wow.

“Apart from a few tiny alternations to make sure everything was spot on – and they were like the width of his bootlaces – we were delighted with it.

“It has now gone to the Powderhall Bronze Foundry, in Edinburgh, and we hope to see the actual bronze sometime in January.”

Col Charlton said the £75,000 target for memorial had been achieved and, because of popular demand, campaigners were now setting their sights on raising enough money for the duplicate statue.

He added: “We would like to say how appreciative we are of the support we have had from The Northern Echo and the Darlington Building Society and the many donors – including the many anonymous donors we have not been able to personally write to thank.”

The appeal was launched in January after two former DLI soldiers, Keith Straughier, a former signaller, and Richard Softely, a former bugler, visited the Staffordshire arboretum and discovered their regiment was not honoured there.

The statue dressed in combat uniform of the Korean War is symbolic, because it was a platoon of 1 DLI buglers who sounded the ceasefire in Korea for the whole of the Commonwealth Division, from a hilltop in the front line.

Korea was the regiment’s last Battle Honour.

Donations for the memorial can be made payable to the Regimental and Chattels Charity of the former DLI and sent to the DLI Memorial Appeal, The Rifles Office, Elvet, Waterside, Durham, DH1 3BW.