Fenton Town Hall and the magnificent Great War Memorial contained within are under serious threat of demolition. Made from Minton tiles and 4m x 3m in dimension, the Great War Memorial remembers 498 men from Stoke-on-Trent who gallantly fell in service of their country. For many who were never recovered it is their grave.
Worryingly, the memorial's size and weight precludes its relocation: it is deeply embedded into the very fabric of the building in a wall at the top of a flight of stairs. And neither the memorial nor the Town Hall is protected as a recent application for listing status was rejected.
Consequently there could be severe repercussions for the hall, memorial and community should it fall into the wrong hands.
The Town Hall, till recently Stoke-on-Trent Magistrates' Courts, was put on the market for private development by the department responsible for its disposal, The Ministry of Justice, in January 2013, for £500,000.
Your signature will help the community, in association with a reputable regeneration charity, transform the building into an exciting venue which will make the Great War memorial accessible to all to appreciate in a free and unhindered manner for the first time since 1968, when the town hall became exclusively a Magistrates, bring in jobs and growth to the area, whilst improving the profile of the local and wider community.
To reiterate: we ask you to sign this petition in requesting the Ministry of Justice put a hold on the sale of the building to private developers and listen to the community's ideas for the town hall; not only then will we ensure the preservation of this fabulous piece of heritage, but we, as a society, can also state with honesty that in this centenary year ALL our WW1 heroes have been treated equally and with dignity.
Animation by Tom Weston
For a copy of the high resolution video for distribution / broadcasting purposes please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Twitter @fentontownhall #fenton498