Colchester History The Writing's On The Wall

Like many garrison towns, Colchester is proud of its past and determined to keep it alive, even when buildings have disappeared or changed beyond recognition.

In a five-part series, Liz Mullen discovers that because of military plaques, iconic buildings like the military hospital and the extraordinary story it has to tell will always be remembered.

Liz spoke to historian Andrew Philips about the state of the art military hospital which was built in 1896:

“When the Army build something they build it well and it was an outstanding building… It was so good that civilian overspill went there.”

1) Military Hospital Colchester

Liz met the High Steward Of Colchester who showed her a plaque which is just as important to the history of Scouting, as it is to the Garrison.

2) Captain Robert Baden-Powell

Next Liz looked into the “secret story” of how early studies on what we’d now call PTSD took place in Colchester. The barracks has been replaced by modern housing but “The Writing’s On The Wall”.

3) Sobraon Barracks

In the fourth part of our Writing’s On The Wall series Liz focuses on a plaque dedicated to one of Colchester’s two resident Victoria Cross recipients, a man who fell into disgrace and was almost forced to give up his medal, until Queen Victoria came to his rescue.

4) CSgt Edmund Fowler VC

As we come to the end of our series Liz Mullen moves out of the Colchester Garrison patch into a leafy avenue near the town centre, to find a plaque dedicated to a remarkable military figure, Earl Wavell.

5) Earl Wavell

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