The enigmatic messages on this 1933 Christmas card* from Bristol rugby stalwart Walter Pearce, include this: “A game, like a country, belongs to those who stand by its laws and what they really mean.”
Sadly, there is no law against desecrating Bristol’s most moving war memorial, but then who would have thought that such a law would be necessary?
- The spirit of the law might be considered?
- Dying for your country might be respected?
- The notion of the military covenant might apply?
- Do BRC and BRFC fan’s memories of a very special sporting venue count for nothing?
- Is the heritage significance of a 93-year-old sports ground also of no interest?
- Why are the wishes of locals ignored?
- Anyway, isn’t a war memorial a war memorial – and not an unused brown field site?
Sainsbury’s claims it has values. Their values are not evident in their hypocritical plans to destroy a famous sports ground. Values and long-term financial success go hand in hand. Whither Sainsbury’s?
The Directors of Bristol Rovers possess a war memorial. They have responsibilities as the custodians of a heritage asset. When will they be responsible and respectful?
UWE are party to a blunder. Are they as guilty as their partners, of trampling on the memory of the fallen sportsmen soldiers (killed in war, often at about the same age as UWE students)?
Why did Bristol City Council – and others who should know better – not stop this nonsense? Destroying a war memorial is wrong. Simple really.
“You don’t know what you’ve got
Till it’s gone
They paved paradise
And put up a parking lot.”
Let’s celebrate and renew a great Bristol sports ground. And pass it on.
Cheers then, and Merry Christmas. Resolution for 2015: shop local, shop happy!
*Bristol Record Office reference: BRO 41582/IM/HM/3.