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Heroes' fund closes on a high

The Colin Grazier Memorial Fund, set up by the Tamworth Herald, has been officially wound up after raising an impressive £17,700.22.

The fund was set up by the Herald five years ago to provide a lasting memorial to Tamworth war hero Colin Grazier.

The multi-award winning campaign culminated in a town centre monument.

The majority of the money came from the public with cheques pouring in not only from Tamworth but from all over the world.

Donations also came from public bodies, private companies and from several fund raising activities.

The vast majority of the fund was spent on the sculpture itself and related foundation work, but the campaign also provided a memorial bench to the Enigma heroes at the National Memorial Arboretum in Alrewas.

The campaign was launched when the Herald discovered the vital part Colin Grazier played in bringing the Second World War to an early end.

For 60 years the Able Seaman had remained virtually unknown in his home town. The campaign, which won several top national newspaper awards, brought his story to international attention.

The Herald also found itself carrying the torch for the two men who helped Grazier retrieve vital Enigma codes from a sinking German U-boat – Tony Fasson, from Scotland, and Tommy Brown from the north-east.

Herald deputy Editor Phil Shanahan, who started the campaign, said: “We set out to get these men proper recognition, but we could not have predicted the spectacular successes that followed.

“Tamworth now has a world class piece of art celebrating one of the most significant acts of courage the world has known. In addition the names of these men are now known throughout the world.

“In Tamworth Grazier has gone from being almost anonymous to the household name he is today. All this would not have been possible without the fantastic support of the public.”

Tributes to Colin Grazier since the campaign began include a hotel and streets named after him, a commemorative plate and a special recipe of beer with his name.

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