Trustees of the Chorley Pals Memorial have elected to site the memorial statue on the ‘Flat Iron’ in Chorley.
It followed a month long consultation with local people which closed at the end of May. Views on four sites were sought, with the ‘Flat Iron’ and outside Booth’s Supermarket being supported by 70% of respondents, the Square outside the Magistrates Court by 19%, whilst the junction of Market Street and St. Thomas’s Road received just 11%.
The overwhelming choice of respondents mirrors the views of Trustees, who always felt that the Flat Iron was the rightful ‘home’ for the memorial. The Pals paraded there each Sunday from September 1914 through to February 1915, before going off to worship in local churches. The Chorley soldiers were regularly inspected on the Flat Iron in late 1914 and early 1915, as well as on the 31st July 1915 when they returned to the town from training at Caernarvon and Cannock Chase. Importantly, the Flat Iron was the first choice of most of the Pals relatives still living in the town.
Secretary and Co-Founder of the Pals Memorial, Steve Williams, met with Council Officials on Wednesday, 10th June to discuss the final position on the site of Chorley’s traditional Tuesday market. An announcement on the final position will be made in July following further meetings with Chorley Council. Steve Williams said “It is not as simple as placing the statue just anywhere. Public access is important as well as CCTV coverage, services above and below ground, surrounding trees, street furniture, road signs and the like – all these have to be taken into consideration. What is important is that the statue will be at the heart of Chorley for everyone to see, not tucked away out of sight in some unlit place”.