Didsbury Village War Memorial Space Enhancement

  • Vision for transformation
  • Fundraising milestone

Didsbury community, councillors and organisations have embarked on an inspiring initiative to create a new Garden surrounding grounds at the Cenotaph. This significant project aims to rejuvenate the area adjacent to Didsbury Library, where the war memorial stands as a solemn focal point for the community, especially on Remembrance Sunday.

Vision for transformation

Over the years, the monument has been fenced, and the surrounding area has been unkempt, being overrun by laurels and other invasive species. Recognizing the need for revitalization, the community has rallied together to launch a comprehensive fundraising campaign. Remarkably, the campaign has already achieved substantial success, amassing enough funds to kickstart the transformative work scheduled which started in January 2024.

The campaign Contributions was made to provide donation form, or alternatively, donations were sent via post to the Didsbury Civic Society at The Old Parsonage, Stenner Lane, Didsbury, Manchester, M20 2RQ.

The vision for the Garden of Contemplation has various aspects, encompassing a range of improvements designed to enhance both the aesthetic and functional aspects of the space. One of the key elements involves re-modelling the area to create a tranquil and contemplative garden. This entails landscaping to provide a peaceful setting that encourages reflection and remembrance.

Accessibility is also at the forefront of the project, with plans to install new pathways, it will not only ensure that the Garden of Contemplation is accessible to everyone in the community but also serve as a testament to the inclusive values that underpin this initiative.

Furthermore, the project is committed to fostering biodiversity by creating an environment that supports local wildlife. Efforts will be made to attract birds, bees, and other creatures, contributing to the ecological richness of the area. This commitment aligns with broader environmental goals and promotes the coexistence of the memorial space with the natural world.

As part of the beautification process, the project includes planting perennial shrubs and bulbs. This thoughtful landscaping not only adds visual appeal to the surroundings but also ensures that the garden remains vibrant and welcoming throughout the changing seasons. The inclusion of these elements reflects a dedication to creating a space that is not only respectful of its historical significance but also a source of joy and inspiration for the community.

Recognizing the importance of communal gathering spaces, the project aims to establish a community seating area. This space will serve as a place for residents to come together, fostering a sense of unity and camaraderie. Additionally, the creation of a designated community meeting place will provide a platform for residents to engage in discussions, share ideas, and participate actively in shaping the future of their community.

Fundraising milestone

The community is actively seeking support and donations for this transformative project. The success of the campaign hinges on the collective effort of individuals who share a commitment to preserving the cultural and historical heritage of Didsbury.

The campaign underscores the power of community collaboration and the shared responsibility to safeguard the cultural and historical treasures that contribute to the rich tapestry of Didsbury’s identity.

Mike Corlett, Director of DCS: “We’ve been quite successful because we’ve had Excellent support from Manchester City Council for this project.

“We did crowd funding for individual donations. But the other thing about this project, it’s a truly a community project and it’s been well supported by all the religious groups, Saint James and Emmanuel Church, also Mosque, which is obviously on Baltimore Road, at the junction with Burton Road and the Westminster Synagogue. All support from the community were effectively well received.

“It’s easy to say that, but it has been well a truly well supported project.”

Progress has been made as the time goes by, the Cenotaph building with intricate path has been installed.