Prince William has given his support to the first ever national memorial in Britain for members of the emergency services who have died in the line of duty. The Duke of Cambridge is joining Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, and former UK premiers in backing what’s been called the ‘999 statue”.
William spoke to The Daily Telegraph of his support for the memorial. The planned tribute was revealed by the newspaper at the weekend. The Duke of Cambridge said ”it is only fitting that we should recognise the vital role that they play, and pay tribute to the bravery and dedication of those who have made the ultimate sacrifice for their communities.”
The bronze monument will be created by sculptor Philip Jackson and will remember more than 7,000 police, fire, ambulance, search and rescue and coastguard services who have died while carrying out their duties. It will also be a testament to the millions still serving. The idea for the tribute came from Tom Scholes-Fogg, a volunteer police sergeant who was inspired after being shown a tree planted in memory of a police officer killed while on duty.
The total cost of the project is around £3 million and a major fundraising operation is now under way to secure the cash. The Telegraph reports that it’s hoped the statue will stand at Hyde Park Corner in central London.
News of the plans came just ahead of Emergency Services Day in the UK. That takes place on Monday September 9th when the Duke of Cambridge is set to visit the Harcombe House Centre of the Fire Fighters’ Charity in Devon which provides support to current and past members of the service.