Six life-sized aluminium silhouettes of British soldiers are now in Epping Forest to commemorate the heroes of World War I.
The silhouettes honour this year’s 100th anniversary of the end of the Great War. The soldiers will become part of the City of London Corporation’s new interactive World War I exhibition. This exhibit is at The View in Epping Forest, its free visitor centre in Chingford. The exhibition captures the story of the Epping Forest Keepers who served in the World War I and runs until 30 November.
The exhibition includes a Family Story Tree. Here, visitors can add a beloved family memoir and a photograph of any relatives who served, survived or died in the war, as a tribute. There will also be activities, historic poems, books and pictures centred around the Family Story Tree.
Epping Forest, which under management of the City of London Corporation, is London and Essex’s largest open space. Run as a registered charity and covering around 2,400 hectares, the site attracts over 4.5 million visits every year. As part of World War I Centenary Partnership, the City of London Corporation teamed up with charities Remembered and the Armed Forces Covenant Fund Trust. This is to install the Tommies in the City and the Forest. The six-foot-high Tommies are part of Remembered’s nationwide art installation campaign called ‘There But Not There’. All proceeds are going to armed forces and mental health charities.
The silhouettes, accessible for everyone to visit, are at:
- High Beech, where Helen Thomas, the wife of the War Poet Edward Thomas, recorded their fateful farewell
Pole Hill, where a soldier stands lookout over a former gun emplacement
At The View visitor centre as part of its World War One exhibition
Guarding three War memorials on Epping Forest Land at Wanstead, Loughton and Epping
Philip Woodhouse, chairman of the City of London Corporation’s Epping Forest and Commons Committee, said:
“We are proud to be part of this nationwide campaign honouring those who made the greatest sacrifices for this country.
“We want all Londoners to feel part of this historic moment. It is important that local people should feel included in the centenary commemorations, as we mark one hundred years since the end of the war.”
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The City of London Corporation protects and conserves 18 major green spaces in London and south east England. This includes two ancient woodlands and over 200 smaller ones in the Square Mile.
They include important wildlife habitats, sites of scientific interest and national nature reserves.
The City of London Corporation funds green spaces across London. They receive over £29m of funding a year from the City Corporation. This pairs with donations, sponsorship, grants and income generated on site.