11 APRIL 1903, Page 15


find it my duty to trouble you again, if you will be kind enough to give me the space, in order to inform "A Londoner" of the facts which have escaped his notice in the interesting suggestion from him which you published on April 4th.

• On February 21st, 1901, Sir A. Hayter (Walsall) asked the First Lord of the Treasury, in the House of Commons, "whether the Government were prepared to consider favourably the erection at the proper moment of an Imperial memorial which should record the first co-operation of British and Colonial troops in war, by the preservation in London of the names of the fallen; and whether the Government were prepared to receive a deputation of Members of Parliament and others interested in the matter in order to take advantage, in any commemoration of the reign of her Majesty Queen Victoria, of the funds promised and the support already given to this proposal, not only in the United Kingdom, but also in the Colonies.' Mr. Balfour, answering Sir A. liayter, said "that at the present stage of proceedings in connection with the memorial to Queen Victoria the Govern- ment had no responsibility, and it would be impossible for them to receive a deputation with reference to the proposal -to erect an Imperial memorial which should record the first ro-operation of British and Colonial troops in war." With reference to this question and answer in the House, I have to say that on May 31st, 1900, I was requested by Lord Salisbury to write to him in reference to the memorial, or to call at the Foreign Office. An appointment was made there in a letter I received on June 5th. The results of the conversation that ensued were laid before Lord Salisbury through the proper official channels, and on June 22nd I received the following message: "I am to thank you for having brought the matter before him, but he fears that at present he is unable to express an opinion."

After further correspondence, a message from Lord Salisbury was conveyed to me in a letter dated November 10th, 1900, which said that "if any declaration on this subject is made by her Majesty's Government, it would be preferable, in his Lordship's opinion, that it should be made in Parliament." In accord- ance with this valuable suggestion, the question and answer already quoted were heard in the House of Commons in February, 1901. Since then a letter signed by a hundred influential members of the Memorial Committee and their supporters was sent to the First Commissioner of his Majesty's Works and Buildings early in 1902 offering, in almost ' the exact words of your correspondent, to carry out, as the Imperial Peace Memorial, the alterations at the eastern end of the Mall which were suggested when the rearrangement of its western end was proposed for the memorial to Queen Victoria. I learn that there are certain technical and legal difficulties in the way of a site at the eastern end of the Mall sufficient for our Purpose; and I am under the impression that a site on the Em- bankment, not far from the garden of the House of Lords, would probably meet with greater official approval. In any case, these matters are now under official consideration, and until my Com- mittee receive their reply it would be obviously improper further to refer to them. Nor can anything yet be said concerning the official attitude of his Majesty's Government, though thirteen members of that Government have privately expressed their approval of the broad principles involved. His Majesty the King, H.R.H. the Prince of Wales, and- other members of the Royal Family have, of course, been carefully kept informed of everything, and for the present I need trespass no further upon your Indulgence in answering the questions raised by your various , correspondents on this important subject in your issues of March 21st and 28th and April 4th. I should not have done so at this length were it not useful that the public should realise that though nothing very much has been openly said about the organisation begun in 1900, its supporters are nevertheless hope- folio! receiving an expression of the Government's opinion in 1908.

As you, Sir, very rightly point out, our reverence for the dead should not supersede our care for the living; and while the picked officers and men of the Bavaria,' chosen to represent a part of our South African army at the Coronation, remain without any recognition either of their service or of their selection after it, it may be still too early to expect official remembrance of their comrades. The due consideration of these matters takes time, and there will be some, perhaps, who will prefer that the inevitable delay should have occurred before any appeal has been made to the public, instead of afterwards.

—I am, Sir, &c., THEODORE A. Coos, Hon. Bea The Imperial Peace Memorial, • 54 Oakley Street, Chelsea.