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Spelling errors on Coombe Hill war memorial to be corrected
SPELLING mistakes on a war memorial are set to be corrected as refurbishment work is carried out on a Buckinghamshire monument.
Corrections are being made to the war memorial plaque at Coombe Hill, near Butlers Cross, with two previously-omitted names also being added.
The 106-year-old monument honours men who died in the South African Boer War from 1899 to 1902.
Months of research to check the accuracy of the monument's weather-worn names discovered that two men had been omitted from the original plaque.
Military historian Johanna Sienkiewicz, of Princes Risborough, and retired Lieutenant Colonel Ingram Murray, of Stewkley, have scoured records to cross-check the two missing names.
When the new bronze plaque is cast next month Sergeant F. Priest, of the Grenadier Guards, and Private A. Huckins, of the Oxfordshire Light Infantry, will be added, bringing the total number of names to 159.
Project workers said the Centre for Buckinghamshire Studies had been a valuable help in checking facts.
The restoration of the Grade 2 Listed structure, costing around £55,000, involves repairing foundations exposed by gradual erosion, replacing weathered joints, and gilding the finial atop the monument.
However, the Coombe Hill Monument Appeal Committee, set up to raise funds for the restoration, is about £10,000 short of its target.
Committee Chairman Major General Stuart Watson said: “If we could obtain sponsorship for the plaque we would be close to reaching our target.”
Before stone masons move in the monument will be deep-cleaned to check for any hidden defects and to enable repairs to blend in.
At 64ft high the monument stands at the highest point on the Chilterns, and was rebuilt in the 1930s after it was hit by lightning. The original bronze plaque, in a number of sections, was stolen in 1972 and a marble replacement was erected.
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