St Peter’s Church in Friesthorpe became the sixth and final destination to receive a commemorative stone cross - to honour a Lincolnshire family whose eight sons went off to war but only three returned.
The special event was hosted at the church to commemorate the Beechey family which included a celebratory service and the presentation of the sixth and final cross to honour the sons who lost their lives in WWI.
Towards the end of the 1800’s, Reverend William Beechey and wife Amy started their family in the village of Friesthorpe and had a total of 14 children. Of these children, each one of their eight sons left to fight in WWI, but sadly only three returned. In honour of the family, six stone crosses have been placed at the final known resting places of the sons including France, Belgium, Tanzania and Australia, with the sixth placed at St Peter’s Church in Friesthorpe.
There were many in attendance at the event, including relatives of the family and several West Lindsey District councillors led by the chairman Cllr. Mrs. Angela Lawrence and leader Cllr. Jeff Summers. Cllr. England, who represents the village as part of his Dunholme and Welton ward, was moved by the service and said:
“This is so very important for the Beechey family as these crosses provide a symbolic connection between the resting places of the five sons and of their family home in Friesthorpe.”
Heather Moore, treasurer and secretary for Friesthorpe Parochial Church Council said over the years the community in Friesthorpe has come together to commemorate the family. She said:
“Over the past 3 years there have been various events held in Friesthorpe to commemorate the brave Beechey family, including a service to dedicate a stained glass window which was donated by the family.
“These events have inspired BBC Radio Lincolnshire along with the Dean of the Cathedral to commission the six stone crosses. This sixth and final cross placed at St Peter’s Church marks the bravery of the Beechey family and pays tribute to the children who survived.”