It gives me great pleasure to act as ambassador for Remembered. Following on from their There But Not There campaign, I am honoured to join with them as they continue to remember the sacrifices of the past and the lessons they provide. As an ex-serviceman I feel strongly that our veterans should play an active role in our society and I am pleased to support Remembered.
Tommy knew about materials. And an early and primitive material was Perspex.
As a small boy I knew Perspex as the blister thru which our Spitfire heroes saw their war.
And that same; crystal clear; safer & better than glass - it made millions of the artefacts of our lives.
Remarkably it is still with us now and when I saw it in an ethereal role as a still and silent silhouette in a church pew, it was both the appropriate material and fitting in it’s silent perfect message - a brilliant clarity and a telling outline. No placard, no noise, not one word needed.
We all knew that silhouette, it will never fade - it was exactly that: There But Not There.
Sir Kenneth Grange, Industrial Designer
Throughout the world I see the impact of war and conflict and I am keenly aware of the effect this has on the mental health of some of our Service personnel. I am proud that in the UK we are engaged in working to help them in this field and I really believe that the There But Not There project is a moving way of getting everybody who sees it to understand what veterans are facing.
Nearly half a million men served at sea during the First World War and some 40,000 lost their lives with the seabed as their last resting place. Additionally a further 15,000 souls were lost from the Merchant Navy and fishing fleets together with nearly 10,000 Royal Naval personnel killed in the trenches. Whilst Jutland was indecisive, it meant that Germany could never put to sea in strength again and the naval blockade of German seaports ensured that ultimately and inevitably they would lose the war. As a maritime nation these losses were felt up and down the country and the silhouettes will ensure our seafaring heroes are honoured in this most moving of commemorations.
Admiral Sir Mark Stanhope GCB OBE ADC DL
I served in the British Army and was wounded whilst on operations in Afghanistan, in the same incident, a soldier was tragically killed. Over the past nine years since then I have faced challenges, and a huge motivation to get through these periods has been to remember my fallen colleagues and the lives they lost in sacrifice for their country. There But Not There remembers the Fallen from WWI but the powerful impact of the project extends so much further and allows us to remember, respect and pay tribute to Service personnel who have lost their lives since then. I am incredibly proud to be associated with it and know that it will help families and communities the length and breadth of the UK who have lost someone at any stage in our Military history”.
This was my father’s war, and the installation moved me to tears
I've been trying to find the right words to describe it. It is impossible because it does that thing that art sometimes does and just stirs the soul a little. ……The spectral echoes of a community's sacrifice. The remembered returned.
Maj (Ret’d) Richard Streatfeild MBE (veteran of Afghanistan)
“There But Not There reminds us of those who served in WW1 and did not return home. I believe that alongside each symbolic figure stands the spectre of five others who did return and found themselves so changed by what they had experienced that life for them and their families would never be the same again. There But Not There stands as a powerful symbol for us to not forget them too.”
Lt Gen Andrew Graham CB CBE, Chairman of Trustees, Combat Stress
I am honoured to be asked to play a small role in such a powerful commemoration. For me, the perspex tommy silhouettes portray the most moving and fitting reminder; that whilst hundreds of thousands of soldiers lost their lives a century ago, they will always continue to remain quietly present in our hearts and minds. This project is not only healing for our veterans, but educational for our youngest generation, contributing to their emotional understanding and respect for our fallen.
Each one of the hundreds of thousands of white headstones in Commonwealth War Graves Commission cemeteries around the world reflects a gap left in a community or family somewhere else in the world. Those names that we pass daily, on local war memorials, or on rolls of honour on the walls of churches, railway stations and schools, were all someone’s son, husband or father.
This project is a brilliant reminder of the lives that were sacrificed for their countries, and the loss that was felt then, in places which are familiar to us all today. It’s a great way to keep their stories alive.
Victoria Wallace, Director General of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission