New boards display town’s history

Councillor Mervin Langmead and Councillor Jane Whittaker at Chudleigh Fort. Councillor Mervin Langmead and Councillor Jane Whittaker at Chudleigh Fort.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012
8:00 AM

The interpretation boards at significant sites will help tell the story of Bideford’s ‘remarkable’ history.

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Councillor Jane Whittaker and Councillor Simon Inch in the Old Town in Bideford.Councillor Jane Whittaker and Councillor Simon Inch in the Old Town in Bideford.

A SET of new history boards in Bideford will revive Bideford’s ‘remarkable’ history, councillors hope.

The interpretation boards were situated at Chudleigh Fort in East-the-Water and the Old Town Cemetery in a joint initiative planned and funded by Bideford’s Torridge District councillors and Bideford 500.

Cllr Jane Whittaker, who is also a member of Bideford 500, said: “We’re delighted with the boards which have already become a talking point around the town.

“Did you know for example that the Old Town Cemetery contains graves of French Napoleonic prisoners of war, or that Chudleigh Fort in 1643 was the site of a civil war battle and surrender to the King’s troops by Parliamentarians?

“Bideford’s history is remarkable and unique, and working with fellow councillors and the Bideford 500 project we hope to make sure that it is not forgotten.”

The boards each contain graphics and a short written pictorial history of each site using drawings, photos and old pictures as well as photos of modern day battle re-enactments and wildlife.

Cllr Mervyn Langmead said: “Children up by Chudleigh Fort love the pictures on the board there, and are fascinated by the history.

“It’s one way of passing down the legacy of the town through the next generation.”

Bideford Mayor Cllr Simon Inch added: “This town has so much to offer with its historical heritage and bright future.

“I really hope people take time to look at these interpretation boards and like me, feel proud of Bideford.”

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