A TAMWORTH war memorial defaced in a “targeted attack” won’t be repaired in time for service honoring the region’s soldiers who died at Sandakan and Ranua.
The Tamworth RSL sub-branch met this week ahead in preparation for Remembrance Day centenary commemorations and president Bob Chapman conceded the Sandakan monument would probably remain defaced by the time February 15 rolled around.
Tamworth holds a service on that date to remember the atrocities of the Sandakan death marches.
Mr Chapman was keen to play down the vandalism’s visibility and told The Leader there was no way it could be fixed in time.
Last week it was revealed one of the peaks on the mountainous memorial had been filed-down while another peak had been hacked into.
“The sub-branch discussed it [on Wednesday], we’re lucky it’s not very noticeable,” he said.
“I could see it being very expensive, but we will repair it down the track when we get the time.”
Mr Chapman was convinced the vandalism was a targeted attack related to an incident from earlier in the year.
“The damage is definitely a targeted attack,” he said.
“I don’t think a vandal would just carry around a hacksaw,” he said.
“But, it's invigorated us to do more and be better up there on February 15 when we conduct our Sandakan service.
“The damage is only minimal compared to what was done on the WWI gates.”
He said it was “too coincidental” to have Tamworth war memorials damaged in the lead up to Anzac and Remembrance days.
Despite some people calling for CCTV cameras to be installed at the city’s memorials, the council crime prevention group said it would be an expensive response.
Chairman of the working group Russell Webb said the installation of permanent CCTV units at the all of the city’s war memorials would not be a “feasible solution” to put a halt to the targeted attacks.