22nd Nov, 2019

Volgograd memorial to move to Coventry city centre to honour oldest twin city

John Carlon 6th Nov, 2019 Updated: 7th Nov, 2019

A MEMORIAL to the Russian city of Volgograd will be moved near Holy Trinity Church in Coventry City Centre.

The Volgograd Memorial will move to the site near Broadgate to honour the city’s oldest twin and partner in its work for peace, the City of Volgograd.

Currently the memorial stands in Volgograd Place near Swanswell, but the council believes a central location is more fitting for the enduring friendship of the cities.

It is being rededicated to honour the 75th anniversary of the twinning between Coventry and Volgograd – formerly known as Stalingrad.

The link was first made when almost 900 women from Coventry embroidered a tablecloth with their names and messages of hope and friendship to send to women in the Russian city as the Battle of Stalingrad raged.

The people of Coventry had suffered through the Blitz and air raids of the Second World War and had already started to reach out in peace.

That first contact led to a formal twinning in 1944 that now enables civic, trade and faith links, as well as school and cultural exchanges.

Cllr Abdul Salam Khan, Deputy Leader of the City Council, said: “We are honoured to be paying tribute to our oldest twin this weekend.

“It will be a double celebration as we are also awarding Volgograd our Coventry Award of Merit, which is the highest honour our city can bestow and it is the first time we have presented one to a city.

“The newly relocated memorial is in such a fitting location – just yards from the inspiring Cathedral Ruins that saw the birth of our work for peace, and next to Broadgate, right at the heart of our bustling city.

“It is the perfect place for Coventry people and visitors to our city to sit and reflect on our work for peace and why our friendship with Volgograd is so important.”

The memorial is being moved from its current home in Volgograd Place.

The rededication service will be held at 12noon on Saturday (9 November) and all are welcome.

The rededication service will be held at noon on Saturday (November 9) and all are welcome.

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