Financial boost for ‘Wartime Woodhall’

Graham Keegan
Graham Keegan

Plans for a major new tourist attraction in Woodhall Spa have received a new boost with the help of the Heritage Lottery.

Officials from the Lottery have announced a grant of £9,000 to the Wartime Woodhall Project.

The money will be used to create a Wartime Woodhall Trail in the village, marking the buildings and locations that played a role in World War One and World War Two.

The project’s primary aim is telling Woodhall‘s role in wartime history and highlighting stories about local people who lost their lives in the conflicts.

Spokesman Graham Keegan said: “We are very pleased to be awarded the grant and all the preparatory work has paid off.

“There are still a couple of hurdles to jump, planning permission being one of them. Our research on Woodhall in WW2 is pretty good and we are much indebted to Simon Elmer.

“However, we do need more information about Woodhall’s role in WW1, namely the units based here, what buildings were used for hospitals and whatever else people may know.”

It is, of course, a significant year for the community in Woodhall.

Apart from being the centenary of the start of WW1, it is also the 70th anniversary of the Battle for Arnhem with the 1st Airlanding Brigade based in the village before the fateful operation.

Plans are in hand for an exhibition of ‘the community’s fallen’. Organisers are appealing for any information.

The exhibition will also feature material, memorabilia and wartime memory videos of senior members of the community recorded by St Andrew’s School.

As for the Trail, Mr Keegan added: “A number of buildings were used in both the Great War and World War II for hospitals and military units.

“The locations will be marked with interpretation board panels complete with QR codes for smart phone users to link to a website.”