Council pledges cash to finish all Portsmouth war plaque names

Jean Louth next to the Second World War memorial in Portsmouth
Jean Louth next to the Second World War memorial in Portsmouth
The 58-year-old was last seen in the Tipner area of Portsmouth on the morning of Monday, January 15.

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SHE’S dedicated her life to making sure all those from Portsmouth who died during the Second World War are honoured.

And now Jean Louth is one step closer to seeing her dream come to life.

For the past 25 years Jean has been working to have a memorial plaque featuring the names of 3,436 people who died during the war.

But with more than 1,000 names outstanding, Portsmouth City Council is now pledging to give £27,000 to finish the project.

Jean, whose father Harry Short was killed in Dunkirk, said she is thrilled with the news.

She said: ‘I’m absolutely elated, as it has been a very, long, hard slog.

‘It will be a few more months before the names go up, but it means they will all finally be remembered.’

It is hoped the names will be added in time for next year’s D-Day 70 commemorations.

The names are featured on plaques, which are mounted next to the World War One memorial in Guildhall Square, Portsmouth.

Councillor Gerald Vernon-Jackson, leader of Portsmouth City Council, said: ‘In the council’s budget I will be proposing to fund the final £27,000 to complete this memorial, so all service men and women are properly commemorated, as well as the hundreds of Portsmouth residents who were killed during the Blitz.’

Jean, of Wakefords Way, West Leigh, began her campaign to honour all those who died.

She said: ‘For years I have harassed the council to tell them there isn’t a memorial, and I thought that was an injustice, to those men and women who died.

‘Gerald has been working with me tirelessly, and I’m grateful for that.’

Funding for the memorial will be discussed at a full council meeting on November 12.

It is hoped inscribing the plaques will start early next year, in time to commemorate 70 years since the D-Day landings.