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Memorial to Stourport WW2 camp is unveiled
Buy this photo » Long overdue: Authors Neil, left, and Adrian Turley admire the Burlish Camp Project plaques. Picture: MIRIAM BALFRY. 091322M.
AN important chapter in Stourport’s history has been brought to life after a £4,000 project to commemorate the town’s former US Army camp was unveiled.
What began as an idea during a walk at Burlish Top for Stourport residents Lisa and Jonathan Cooper more than a year ago became reality on Tuesday as 50 people gathered for the Burlish Camp Project’s opening ceremony.
Information boards tell the fascinating story of the site’s Second World War history, using Heritage Lottery Fund grant money.
Pupils from Stourport Primary School and Burlish Park Primary School, and Adrian and Neil Turley, authors of US Army at Camp in Bewdley and the Wyre Forest Area: 1943-1945, were among guests who cheered as the boards were unwrapped.
Mrs Cooper said: “It is absolutely fantastic.
Actually seeing everything in place and listening to the kids laughing it is a dream come true.”
It has been a joint venture by Wyre Forest District Council, Stourport Town Council, Stourport Civic Society, Stourport Forward and We love Stourport-on- Severn facebook page owners Mr and Mrs Cooper.
In 1943, 4,000 American troops arrived at Burlish as the Allies prepared for D-Day the following year.
After April, 1944 the camp was converted into a US Army hospital and then became home to American and Polish Second World War veterans.
Geoff Shaw, district council project manager for Burlish Camp, said: “People have always known something about it but now they have some clear information about what went on here.”
Stourport Primary School teacher Amanda Nesbitt added: “The children have had a fantastic day and it was really important we were part of this momentous occasion.”
A revamped guided walk will be unveiled later this year and a public tour of the site will take place on Sunday, starting at the Burlish Park Golf Club car park at 10am.