Inauguration of the new Norman Cross Eagle
On Saturday 2nd April 2005, His Grace the Duke of Wellington, one of the patrons of the Appeal, inaugurated the restored memorial, watched by an audience of over 1,000 people.
The Norman Cross Eagle as a war memorial
While the original impetus for restoring the memorial had been because it was an important part of the local history of the Peterborough area, it is also an important memorial to French war dead. Le Souvenir Français had supported the project from its inception, and during the inauguration Vice-Admiral Jean Pierre Lucas of that organisation and the Duke of Wellington both laid wreaths in memory of the French soldiers and seamen who died at the prison depot.
Alongside the Inauguration ceremony, the Appeal Committee organised a Living History Day at the Agent’s House. The Agent was the commander of the prison depot, and his house still survives. It is now part of the Norman Cross Gallery; a privately owned art gallery. A Souvenir Programme was published giving details of the inauguration of the new eagle, plus a timetable of the events held at the Gallery.
Living History Day
The Living History event was designed to present the Napoleonic period to the public in the form of re-enactment displays, folk dancing, singing, talks about the prison depot, and wargames.
Source: Local Heritage Initiative
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