Tarmac supporting national living memorial


“We are proud to be able to support the National Memorial Arboretum in creating a living memorial in honour of those who have lost their lives during the pandemic. It’s extremely rewarding for us to see this former quarry site restored to a place that honours so many people, whilst also being such a fantastic home for wildlife and nature.”

Stuart Wykes, Director of Land and Natural Resources

Tarmac is supporting the National Memorial Arboretum with its plans to create a living memorial commemorating the lives lost during the pandemic.

In 2021 we entered in to a new 980-year lease agreement for a 25-acre plot on the former quarry workings in Alrewas for a peppercorn rent. The National Memorial Arboretum already leased the current 150-acre site from Tarmac on a similar agreement.

Plans have been developed to transform the existing scrubland and silt pond into a living landscape, representative of the changing seasons, where people can gather to reflect and contemplate the impact of the pandemic and remember loved ones.

The National Memorial Arboretum, within the National Forest in Staffordshire, is partnering with the National Forest Company to create the living memorial. The plans to expand the 150-acre woodland and garden site by a further 25-acres have been launched to coincide with the 20th anniversary since the Arboretum opened its doors to the public, which is part of a new, ambitious vision for modern remembrance with sustainability, accessibility, and inclusion at its core.

Philippa Rawlinson, Managing Director of the National Memorial Arboretum, said: “We have been inundated with requests to create a new remembrance space where people can reconnect and reflect on the collective sacrifices we have made as a country, during what have been some of the darkest days since the end of the Second World War.

“These ambitious plans to create a living memorial to all who have lost their lives as a result of the pandemic is a key part of our vision as we continue to grow as the nation’s yearround centre of remembrance, freely open to all.”

Groundworks for the new memorial woodland begin in early 2022, ahead of a habitat creation and tree planting effort supported by the National Forest Company. It is hoped that public access to the woodland will begin in 2023.