A WAR memorial is to be moved to a new four-acre park on the edge of Bicester.
The Pioneer Memorial will be relocated from Graven Hill barracks – former home of the Royal Pioneer Corps – to the Graven Hill self-build housing development.
Work is due to begin today (monday) on Gateway Park, the new-look entrance from the A41 into Bicester's Graven Hill development, on November 20.
The memorial was built and unveiled by the Colonel Commandant of the Royal Pioneer Corps, Gen Sir John Cowley at the corps' former headquarters at Simpson Barracks, Northampton in 1964.
Graven Hill Managing Director Adrian Unitt said: "We are delighted to be able to open Gateway Park to the public which has been eagerly anticipated by local residents.
"The park will offer 4.6-acres of open space, landscaped parkland, a lake with islands for wildlife and footpaths for everyone to enjoy.

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"It is another huge boost to the popularity of the Graven Hill development and will undoubtedly appeal to anyone who is looking to move to, or relocate within, Bicester."
The memorial was relocated to the Bicester St Davids Barracks in 1993, from where the 23rd Regiment would regularly train and deploy on exercises and operations.
An estimated 3,600 pioneers served in Bicester over the decades, until the regiment and its reserves (158 Pioneer Regiment) were disbanded on October 14, 2014.
The MoD site, surrounding St David's Barracks, were then included in Cherwell District's Council redevelopment masterplan as part of the Graven Hill development which broke ground in 2018 and is now home to almost 500 families and growing.
Mr Unitt added: "The fact we are able to incorporate the Pioneer Memorial into the park was something that was very important to the team, and we're delighted even more people will be able to see and recognise the huge contribution that pioneer regiment made to our country and the local Bicester community."
The original bricks that make up the 3m high memorial will carefully be dismantled and transported to the Gateway Park which overlooks the new Graven Hill entrance, featuring a new identical blue remembrance plaque recreated to honour the pioneer heroes.
As part of the road and access improvements, the old Anniversary Avenue entrance to former MOD logistics hub and office E25 is being closed and the new Graven Hill spine road, also named Anniversary Avenue (East), will be opened.
This will be accessed from the mini-roundabout on Graven Hill road. The works are expected to complete early in the new year with no access impact to Graven Hill residents or visitors.


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This story was written by Matthew Norman, he joined the team in 2022 as a Facebook community reporter.

Matthew covers Bicester and focuses on finding stories from diverse communities.

Get in touch with him by emailing: Matthew.norman@newsquest.co.uk

Follow him on Twitter: @OxMailMattN1