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Statue of WW1 Soldier Unveiled

Joseph Frederick Aukett was born in Eastbourne on 25 February 1897 and joined the 7th Battalion, Royal Sussex Regiment, at the start of the First World War. He remained with that regiment until the battle of Arras, where he died on 3 May 1917.

One hundred years later, his great niece, sculptor Elisa Funnell, created a statue at her home in Canada to honour Joe’s memory.

On Friday 10 November, Elisa was joined by fellow members of Joe’s family, representatives of the Royal Sussex Museum Trust, and local councillors to unveil her statue in a special ceremony at Langney Primary School, which was chosen as the perfect place for the statue by Barry Lane of the Royal Sussex Museum Trust after he witnessed the school’s long term commitment to learn about and remember another local soldier, Nelson Victor Carter VC. Some of the school’s staff and governors were also present and pupils laid a wreath. The unveiling took place on the final day of a Remembrance Week held by the school to introduce the pupils to Joe’s fascinating story.

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