Fallen soldiers' families get memorial after chapel fight

Bereaved families launched a Facebook campaign to oppose plans to demolish the wooden Chapel of Rest. Credit: Ministry of Defence

The Ministry of Defence has rejected a campaign by the families of fallen soldiers to save the chapel in which their loved ones were repatriated from being demolished, but will build a memorial at the site instead.

Campaigners, backed by a local MP, held meetings with Government officials after launching an online petition calling for the Chapel of Rest at RAF Lyneham in Wiltshire to be protected as a "sacred" place.

The MoD, which had previously urged families to attend national sites of remembrance, insisted the wooden prefab chapel had to be knocked down.

But the ministry has agreed to incorporate a "memorial dedication" in the new structure and to build a "garden of remembrance" for the families and public.

Jacqui Janes, who led the campaign and petition, told ITV News it was the "best alternative" to keeping the chapel.