Making a pitch for peace in Armley

Andy Dalton at The Mission Room, Armley

By Andy Dalton

As Remembrance Day approaches a pitch for peace is being made in the Armley shopping area.

Dagmar Truman, who works at Leeds City Mission in Mistress Lane, near Armley Library, is putting an old war memorial on display.  Every day this week she is placing a table outside the City Mission premises along with two wreaths of poppies.

The old war memorial bears the names of six members of the Armley Temperance Society who lost their lives in the First World War. It was discovered three years ago by volunteers working on the renovation of the Mission Room in Mistress Lane.  It was found buried underneath items of rubbish in the loft.  

Dagmar Truman is German. Her father was conscripted into the German Wehrmacht (army) as a teenager in the later years of World War Two. He was captured by allied forces as they advanced after the D-Day invasion. Her early memories recall her father recounting his experiences of those terrible times.

She said that we should all remember that war is an awful thing. With the current conflicts in Ukraine and Gaza she said it was important to focus away from conflict and to focus on peace and reconciliation for the nations. Dagmar hoped that the display will encourage people to work towards forgiveness and peace between all peoples.

The War Memorial is in a wooden frame and the names of the fallen soldiers can be clearly read. 

Six names are listed: L Coates, L Kirk, J Noble, W Storr, W Webster, W Wainwright.   

The Mission Room was built in the 1923. The Armley Gospel Temperance Society transferred from their former chapel premises in nearby Wesley Street in the 1960s. The War Memorial was brought along with their other items in the move. 

The War Memorial will be on display outside the Mission Room in Mistress Lane, Armley from Monday to Friday (5 to 10 November, weather permitting).

Local people can see this as they pass on their way to the shops. Leeds City Mission welcome any information from local people about the soldiers whose names are featured on the Memorial.



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