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Museum praises Herald's role in history

One of the world’s most famous museums has paid tribute to the Tamworth Herald for its vital role in securing recognition for three unsung British war heroes who helped shorten World War Two.

The Herald has been campaigning for recognition of Navy heroes Colin Grazier, Tommy Brown and Tony Fasson.

The trio served on HMS Petard and were involved in a 10-hour battle with a German U-boat, in which Grazier and Fasson lost their lives retrieving vital Enigma codes, which are said to have shortened the war by a year.

Since the campaign was launched the heroes have been honoured in many ways, including the opening of £1m hotel.

Paying tribute to the campaign, Nigel Steel, head of research at the Imperial War Museum, told deputy editor Phil Shanahan: “I greatly admire the persistence and patience that you and the Herald have demonstrated over a considerable time in securing for Grazier, Fasson and Brown the national recognition they deserve.”

He also revealed that Herald articles charting its Enigma campaign will form an important part of the museum’s historic records.

“They will provide a very useful source of background information to the Petard story as well as recording the Herald’s own part in securing recognition for it,” he said.

The praise follows a meeting at the museum in which Mr Shanahan and assistant editor John Harper discussed securing a permanent place in the museum galleries for the war heroes.

After the meeting Mr Steel said the museum would be delighted to commemorate Colin Grazier’s story in its permanent exhibitions if an appropriate way could be found.

In a letter to Mr Shanahan following the meeting, he said: “The Imperial War Museum remains keen to help you in your campaign and would be delighted to be able to commemorate Colin Grazier in its galleries if an appropriate means of doing so can be arranged.”

Mr Shanahan said: “I have always felt that there is a gap in the war museum’s exhibitions, because this story was a pivotal moment of the Second World War and since the campaign began it has caught the imagination of the public.

“Grazier, Fasson and Brown really do deserve a permanent home in the world’s most famous war museum in the heart of London. A way of successfully achieving this just has to be found.”

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