Some years ago the History Group placed a Commemorative Stone at Chiseldon Camp. The History Group never intended this to be a War Memorial. At the request of the Parish Council the New Road Memorial was created in the 1980’s by the Royal Engineers, and has since represented the War Memorial for the Parish.
The plaque on the Commemorative Stone at Chiseldon Camp reads:
“About this place stood Chiseldon Camp 1914 -1962. This stone is dedicated to the men and women of all nations who passed this way during those years, many of them brought here by the major conflicts of the 20th Century. Chiseldon Local History Group 11th November 1999”
The placement of this Commemorative Stone was done in good faith at the time, believing all relevant legal actions had taken place.
Regretfully new information has since come to light which shows that neither Chiseldon Parish Council, Swindon Borough Council or the History Group own the land the stone is placed on. The Landowner at the time gave permission but did not gift the land to the parish.
As a result there were no relevant legal actions in place when a new Land Owner purchased the land and it was subsequently handed down the family line. The current Land Owner now requires the Commemorative Stone to be removed from their land.
The current Parish Council together with the History Group have been trying to resolve this issue for some time . They have received comprehensive legal advice and support from Swindon Borough Council who have gone above and beyond their duties to help this situation and have saved the Parish thousands of pounds in legal costs.
The stone has now been confirmed as on the landowners property. We have therefore reached the point where we are trying to find a location nearby that is suitable for the stone to be moved to.
It is not the solution we know a lot of people will have wished for but regrettably we have run out of legal options.
The site must be suitable for people to gather at the stone without danger from the highway, or without putting highway users in danger.
We hope you can appreciate that to ensure this gets resolved as smoothly as possible, it is best handled sensitively by the history group with ongoing support from the Parish Council and the Borough Council.
We will continue to work with the history group on this matter until it is resolved.
We would also appreciate if you could consider the sensitivity of comments on Facebook which could result in this matter becoming more difficult to resolve.
Thank you for your time in reading this and we hope it allows you to understand the complexity of the situation we are working through.