VolkerFitzpatrick is proud to have volunteered its services to support the creation of an art installation marking the centenary of the end of the First World War, representing the commonwealth servicemen who fell at the Battle of the Somme, whose bodies still lie beneath the battlefields in France.
The memorial, designed by artist Rob Heard, took five years to complete and is a graphic representation of loss and remembrance, giving the lost men a name and a place in our memories forever.
Supporting Servicemen from the Royal Anglian Regiment, volunteers from VolkerFitzpatrick worked from Monday 5 to Wednesday 7 November laying 72,396 handmade 12-inch shrouds, shoulder to shoulder, at London’s Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.
Each figure is based on a name taken from the Thiepval Memorial, in France and signifies a named Commonwealth soldier who died on the Somme battlefields between 1916 and 1918 but who have no known grave.
An initial exhibit was held in Bristol and Exeter showcasing 19,240 figures representing the number of fatalities on the first day of the Battle of the Somme.
For the Strafford event over the 100 year anniversary of the armistice, VolkerFitzpatrick supplied and installed the viewing platforms, temporary walkways, fencing and marquees. The team also worked with The Shrouds of the Somme, offering construction advice and helping develop the plans and overview the setting out to facilitate the laying of the shrouds.
Shrouds of the Somme chairman, Jake Moores, said: “VolkerFitzpatrick have been absolutely brilliant. They have done so much for us and we really couldn’t have done it without them. To the walkways through to the laying of the shrouds, the precision of the engineering and surveying has been fantastic.”
This latest event is free and opened to the public from Thursday 8 to Sunday 18 November 2018.
Commenting, Rob Heard said: “The involvement of VolkerFitzpatrick is key, we couldn’t have done it without them. Their ability to make this happen and their passion has been extraordinary. I cannot say enough how great it’s been to work with the team.”
Matt Ghinn, VolkerFitzpatrick’s project director, said: “We are extremely proud to have been able to support such an impactful exhibition. The hard work and dedication that has gone into the creation of this display is truly inspirational and it is a powerful and fitting memorial, which will leave a lasting impression on anyone visiting.”