Joint statement from Race Council Cymru and Cardiff Council


We were deeply troubled by the images of poppy wreaths laid to honour Black and Ethnic Minority armed service personnel at the Alexandra Gardens war memorial left by a nearby litter bin this week. 

 We now know that a wreath from the nearby Falklands War Memorial had also been placed by the bin as well.  

It is possible that the recent bad weather had blown the wreaths away from the monuments, and that someone had collected them to tidy the gardens and placed them by the litter bin. 

However, the wreaths were badly damaged and there is no CCTV covering Alexandra Gardens so we cannot confirm exactly what happened. If anyone witnessed anyone vandalising the wreaths we would ask that they contact the police.

When we became aware that the wreaths had been left by a bin, a Council officer was sent to the area. They thought the wreaths were in too poor a state to return to the monuments and they were removed.

The Council is now in the process of replacing the damaged wreaths on both monuments and a special service attended by the Leader of the Council, British Armed Forces and representatives from Race Council Cymru's Black History Cymru 365 and the Windrush Cymru Elders Chairperson will place these new wreaths shortly.

However the wreaths were damaged, what is clear is that they were not suitably secured to protect them from harsh weather conditions. To prevent anything like this happening in future, the council will ensure that all wreaths are secured with wire following Remembrance Ceremonies. 

Cardiff Council was proud to work with Race Council Cymru and other partners to install the monument and to support the elders at their unveiling of this important plaque in 2019, commemorating the contribution of Black, Asian and Ethnic Minority service personnel who served during the First and Second World Wars. It is the product of a lifelong campaign from the late Patti Flynn, whose father and brothers were lost in the war, and a monument which Patti saw revealed in her home city during the opening ceremony.

Both Cardiff Council and Race Council Cymru have agreed to hold an annual joint ceremony to recognise our Black, Asian and Ethnic Minority service personnel to ensure their stories are told to current and future generations.