Princess Royal backs Liverpool Battle of the Atlantic memorial campaign

Statue of Captain Walker on Liverpool waterfront Image copyright Des Blenkinsopp/Geograph
Image caption The Battle of the Atlantic is currently marked on the waterfront by a statue of Capt F J Walker

The Princess Royal has become patron of a campaign to build a national memorial to those who died in World War Two's longest and largest naval battle.

The Battle of the Atlantic Memorial (BOAM) charity wants to create a £2.5m monument on Liverpool's waterfront.

The battle, which was co-ordinated from the city, ran for the whole of WW2 and claimed over 100,000 lives.

Princess Anne said she hoped the new memorial's "legacy and engagement" would "inspire future generations".

The Battle of the Atlantic - a term coined by Winston Churchill - saw the Allies work to secure shipping across the Atlantic, so supplies could be provided for the war effort.

Its nerve centre was The Western Approaches Command Centre, which was moved from Plymouth in 1940 to a bomb-proof basement of an office block in Liverpool.

Image copyright BOAM
Image caption The battle was World War Two's longest and largest naval conflict

BOAM chairman Gary Doyle said the Princess Royal "genuinely cares about seafarers and the immense contribution of the Royal Navy and Merchant Navy to World War Two, without whom the country would not have been able to arm or feed itself".

The campaign was originally launched in 2018 with plans for a memorial designed by sculptor Paul Day, who subsequently stood down due to other commitments.

The charity hopes to unveil the monument on the city's Pier Head, close to the statue of Capt Frederic John Walker, in 2023.

Capt Walker was an expert in anti-submarine warfare and one of Britain's most successful naval commanders, and his statue is inscribed with a tribute to him, his crew and "all those who fought in the Battle of the Atlantic".

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