A not-for-profit association for The Royal Australian Army Medical Corps has told the Doings it is ‘concerned’ about the Fenland District Council’s proposed plan to ‘lay down’ a memorial for one of its first medical officers.
National president for the RAAMC Association, Theo Dechaufepie, voiced his concerns about the possible dismantling of William Bedford’s memorial in Doddington churchyard, and said that the organisation is seeing if there is a solution.
“Unfortunately, we are a not for profit association, which means we don’t have any money, however we are currently investigating the situation to see what we can do,” Dechaufepie said.
RAAMC Assocation secretary, Stewart Jones, told the Doings: “A few discussions are underway to determine what action we may take.”
William James Guthrie Bedford is mentioned on the Australian government website’s history of the Royal Australian Army Medical Corps. It states:
“The regular force that was enrolled in NSW in 1870 consisted of one Battery and two Companies of Artillery, and in 1871 Dr W.J. Bedford was appointed Staff Surgeon to this unit, becoming the first regular Australian Army Medical Officer in the defence forces of the colony.”
Bedford moved to the UK when he retired, and was living down Benwick Road in Doddington when he died in 1902.
The plans came to light last Thursday, and on Saturday a safety fence was erected around the two memorials scheduled to be dismantled.
– Tim Lince