Hero dogs remembered at special ceremony

Photo by Paul Massey

Photo by Paul Massey

More than 60 people and almost 30 dogs attended a ceremony at Cannock Chase to celebrate working dogs.

Cannock Chase Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) held a remembrance ceremony for working dogs on 11 November.

The annual event, now in its fifth year, was inspired by Freda, a Dalmatian-type dog that was the New Zealand Rifles’ mascot, when the regiment was stationed on Cannock Chase during the First World War. She died in 1918, while the regiment was training on Cannock Chase, and is buried there.

In memory of Freda, and dogs like her, the AONB held a ceremony at her grave, which is off Chase Road, near Stafford.

This year, 61 people and 27 dogs gathered at Freda’s grave to take part in the ceremony.

The event included listening to readings and poems, and laying wreaths on the grave.

Freda’s grave is 0.6 miles south east of Brocton Village, near Stafford. It is marked ‘Meml’ on the Ordnance Survey Explorer Map 244 – Cannock Chase and its grid reference is SJ978188.

The Milford Common Trail passes the grave. A leaflet is available from the nearby Cannock Chase Visitor Centre at Marquis Drive in Cannock Chase Country Park.

For more information about Cannock Chase AONB, please contact Emma Beaman on 01785 619186 or email cannock.chase@staffordshire.gov.uk

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