Lions of the Great War.
Bronze and Granite – Smethwick - Birmingham
Guru Nanak Gurdwara Smethwic appointed Black Country sculptor Luke Perry to create the “Lions of the Great War” monument to honour the sacrifices made by South Asian service personnel of all faiths from the Indian subcontinent who fought for Britain in the two world wars and subsequent conflicts.
In addition to this Sandwell Council worked with Luke to design and create the Public Space that has been carved out for the monument in the heart of Smethwick.
Millions of men from the Indian subcontinent fought in the two world wars, serving in the British Indian Army. The majority of these soldiers never visited the country they were fighting for, yet many sacrificed their lives on the battlefield or afterwards. The contribution of these soldiers is unmeasurable.
President of Guru Nanak Gurdwara Smethwick, Jatinder Singh said “This work is the greatest thing that we have achieved, working with Luke to make this a reality has been the jewel of my life. The Monument makes us both proud to be Sikh and proud to be British”.
Sculptor Luke Perry said: “The importance of this monument both locally and nationally is huge. I am incredibly proud to have worked on a sculpture that is, at its heart, a statement of gratitude for the actions of a people who gave their lives for our independence when they had not yet achieved their own. It is a striking and permanent marker of the richness of our community, that those who have been under-celebrated are finally getting the recognition they deserve. It is our finest work to date.
Sandwell Council Leader Councillor Steve Eling said: “It’s a very proud moment for Smethwick and Sandwell to see this impressive statue unveiled it is a tribute to those from the Indian subcontinent have made Smethwick their home and I hope this contributes to the growing recognition of the sacrifices that servicemen from South Asia and across Commonwealth countries have made for our country.”