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from The Guardian Friday 22 June 2001

Memorial unveiledLast post - Memorial to soldiers shot as cowards

A memorial to the 306 British and commonwealth soldiers shot for desertion or cowardice in the first world war was unveiled yesterday. writes John Ezard.

The 10ft statue is modelled on Private Herbert Burden (pictured below), who lied about his age to join the Northumberland Fusiliers at the age of 16.

Private Herbert BurdenThe memorial, by Birmingham artist Andy de Comyn, was unveiled by Gertie Harris, 85, the daughter of Private Harry Farr of the West Yorkshire Regiment, who was shot in 1916.

It stands in an amphitheatre of wooden stakes, like execution posts,each bearing the name of an executed soldier, at the National Memorial Arboretum, in Alrewas, near Ljchfield, Staffordshire. Private Burden panicked at the battle of Ypres and was shot for desertion.

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