Guernsey

Wildflowers for Guernsey Loafers' Wall to mark WW1 anniversary

Loafers' Wall, St Peter Port, Guernsey Image copyright Town Centre Partnership
Image caption John Silvester said the island's 40,000-strong population had been heavily affected by the war

A former popular meeting place in Guernsey is being refurbished and covered in wildflowers to commemorate the 100th anniversary of World War One.

Loafers' Wall, as it became known, was built in 1914 as part of the redevelopment of Fountain Street, in St Peter Port.

The parish constables have paid for an original lamp to be replaced and two new lights to be installed.

A special dedication ceremony is due to take on 10 May.

John Silvester, from the Town Centre Partnership, said the wall was built just before the commencement of the war and the aim was to make the area "hugely symbolic".

'Always people leaning'

He said wildflowers from Flanders would be put in planters added to the wall and would be in place for four years to commemorate the whole of World War One.

Guernsey social historian Ron Le Cras said: "I remember as a youngster coming into town and there were always people leaning on the wall.

"In those days the States insurance used to be nearby and it was not only a place for meeting people but you also had people waiting to get into the States insurance for their unemployment benefit and things like that."

He said heavy traffic in the area meant it was very different now from how it had been in the 1960s and 1970s.

"Hundreds of people walk past it everyday and no one realises its history," Mr Le Cras added.

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