WWI War Memorial for Indian soldiers

Commemorating Indian soldiers who fell in WWI
Photo by Tony Mould
A moment of contemplation
Photo by Tony Mould
The Mayor lays a wreath on behalf of the people of the city
Photo by Tony Mould

Remembering their sacrifice

At midday on Sunday 26 September, a new war memorial, built by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission, was unveiled in close proximity to the Chattri Indian Memorial in Patcham. It is designed to pay tribute to some of the one and half million Indian soldiers who fought for the British Empire during the First World War. The new memorial bears the names of 53 Indian soldiers who died in Brighton and were cremated on the site of the Chattri memorial.

Local, national and international guests

Among the guests who attended the unveiling ceremony, were the Mayor and Mayoress of Brighton & Hove, Councillor Geoffrey and Mrs Sally Wells, Lord Lieutenant of East Sussex Mr Peter Field, The High Sheriff of East Sussex, Mrs Deborah Bedford, Director-General of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission, Richard Kellaway; His Excellency The High Commissioner of India to the UK, Nalin Surie; representatives of the British Indian community and veterans from the Undivided Indian Ex-services Association and the Royal British Legion.

A special link with the past

Also present for the ceremony was The Marquess of Abergavenny, whose family owned the land on which the original ghat (funeral pyre) was built where the Indian soldiers could be cremated, and then their ashes scattered in the English Channel. This land was subsequently sold to Brighton County Borough so that a permanent memorial could be established.

Comments about this page

  • Information on the history of Brighton, Hove and Portslade, plus the photography from the Mould camera makes this the best web site anywhere on the planet. Long may it continue. Best Wishes to the Team. Geoff.

    By Geoff Wells (28/09/2010)
  • Went to this for the first time in the Summer with the Beavers pack. Have lived all my nearly 43 years in Brighton and Hove and never knew of this. Quite breathtaking when you get near it.

    By Darren Stuart (28/09/2010)
  • I agree with Geoff 100%! Having been born-and-bred in Brighton (but now living in Swansea), I visit this website every day for my daily ‘fix’ of Brighton! A truly excellent website, but the trouble is, it makes me so homesick!

    By Simon Hathaway (28/09/2010)
  • I attended the wreath laying ceremony at this beautiful Chattri Memorial from 2002 to 2005. My sincere thanks to the members of the community who take tremendous amount of interest to keep this flame burning. Thanks to the Mayor of Brighton as well for all the support. My sincere homage to the brave Indian soldiers who made the supreme sacrifice.

    By Col Pradeep Bhatia (21/11/2013)

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