A STATUE to mark 100 years since a Victoria Cross First World War winner received the military’s top honour will be unveiled next Saturday, October 27.

This follows a £100,000 fundraising effort launched by the Newton and Earlestown Community Group in 2016 to create a memorial statue to VC recipient Private Norman Harvey at Newton-le-Willows’ Mesnes Park.

Norman was 19 when he won his VC medal on October 25, 1918 for his actions in Ingoyhem, Belgium.

Despite his age, when Norman’s battalion was held up and suffering severe casualties from machine-gun fire, he ran forward and engaged the enemy single-handed, killing two, wounding one and capturing 12 men and two guns.

He later used a hidden machine-gun to put the enemy to flight. When night fell, he went out alone and gathered important information. Throughout these actions, Norman was limping as he had a sprained ankle.

The two-metre high statue, capturing the moment just after the action that won him the honour, will be unveiled at Mesnes Park’s remembrance meadow at 3.45pm following a service at 2.45pm at St Peter’s Church and a parade to the park from 3.35pm.

Vice chair of the NECG, Cllr Seve Gomez-Aspron said: “I hope that the public can turn out and support such a key event in the First World War centenary commemorations. The council, the public and NECG have pulled together to fund this statue as a tribute to Norman Harvey’s brave actions and to the more than 300 soldiers from Newton-le-Willows that paid the ultimate price in the First World War. As we don’t have a contact list for the Newton Remembrance Day Parade, then those who participate are more than welcome to join the parade on the 27th to represent their organisation.”

Guests will include St Helens North MP Conor McGinn, councillors, 80 members of Norman’s family, mounted police horses, representatives from the Royal Irish Regiment, the Royal Engineers, the Duke of Lancaster’s Regiment and 103 Regiment and there will also be a performance by Haydock Male Voice Choir.

n The public are welcome to the church although space may be limited, and along the parade route on Park Road North and through Mesnes Park.