Hayling Island War-time memorial in place... but the hard work goes on

EASY DOES IT The stone arrived on Hayling seafront, transported by Engineers from 24 Commando based in North Devon. The stone was unloaded by local crane specialist Marsh Plant Holdings from Havant and erected in situ by C.W.O. Catherdral Works Organisation (CWO). Picture: Malcolm Wells (122372-5564)

EASY DOES IT The stone arrived on Hayling seafront, transported by Engineers from 24 Commando based in North Devon. The stone was unloaded by local crane specialist Marsh Plant Holdings from Havant and erected in situ by C.W.O. Catherdral Works Organisation (CWO). Picture: Malcolm Wells (122372-5564)

Army reserves from 295 Battery in Hilsea held a free PT session on Southsea Common Picture: Sarah Standing (160729-9518)

Portsmouth’s army reservists are a key asset

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THE stunning memorial stone may be in place but the hard work isn’t over yet.

The dedicated team behind the project to place a permanent memorial to the Copp unit – secret wartime crack commandos – is going into a fundraising drive to pay for further work.

EASY DOES IT The stone arrived on Hayling seafront, transported by Engineers from 24 Commando based in North Devon. The stone was unloaded by local crane specialist Marsh Plant Holdings from Havant and erected in situ by C.W.O. Catherdral Works Organisation (CWO). Picture: Malcolm Wells (122372-5613)

EASY DOES IT The stone arrived on Hayling seafront, transported by Engineers from 24 Commando based in North Devon. The stone was unloaded by local crane specialist Marsh Plant Holdings from Havant and erected in situ by C.W.O. Catherdral Works Organisation (CWO). Picture: Malcolm Wells (122372-5613)

Organiser Robin Walton was there to watch members of 24 Commando Engineer Regiment, Royal Engineers, hand over the granite rock on Hayling seafront on Thursday, as reported.

They had brought it 220 miles from a quarry in Cornwall.

It was a delicate two-hour operation to haul the 12 ton stone up from their flat bed lorry and onto the mound.

Now Mr Walton would like a little more help to make the memorial complete.

He said: ‘The mound needs to be extended to make it look like a natural fit.

‘It needs some moss and grass growing over to naturalise it.

‘We want it to look like it’s been there a long time.

‘That is going to cost a bit more money so we will be fundraising again.

‘We also have the official dedication ceremony in September where the last remaining Coppists will be honoured.

‘That will be a big event which we have invited the army too as well.

‘With the weather as it is we need to make sure we have enough money to pay for a covering to prepare for rain on the day.

‘We want to make it as special as possible.’

The Copp unit was based on Hayling during the Second World War and carried out top secret missions to survey beaches in preparation for the allied landings.

To donate make a cheque payable to the Copp Heroes Memorial Fund, PO Box 30, Hayling Island, Hampshire, PO11 9UD. Or go to coppheroes.org to donate online.

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