The last known survivor of HMS Jupiter living in the UK has unveiled a lasting tribute to those who served on the destroyer during the Second World War.
Jupiter Road at Redrow’s Laburnum Gardens development has been named in recognition of HMS Jupiter, which was adopted by the then Evesham Borough Council during WWII.
A road sign, including the HMS Jupiter crest, was unveiled by Harold Lock who was serving on the destroyer when it was sunk by a mine off the coast of Java in 1942.
He was welcomed to the development by Darren Turk, managing director of Redrow Homes (Midlands).
Mr Lock, now 91, lied about his age to join the Royal Navy at just 14 years old. When HMS Jupiter sank he swam through miles of shark infested waters to reach land, only to be met by Japanese soldiers. He was held captive for more than three years until the end of the war.
Recalling the incident, he said: “I was only 16 when I dived overboard. I was lucky I was swimming when I was four-years-old and distance was my thing. It’s a bit of an honour [to open Jupiter Road]. I didn’t expect it after all these years have passed by.”
The road naming ceremony was organised by Redrow in conjunction with Evesham Town Council, Wychavon District Council and the HMS Jupiter Association.
The name for the road was suggested by Evesham Town Council. A framed picture and certificate of appreciation was presented to the council during the event.
Mayor of Evesham Cllr Charlie Homer, said: “As a town, we are proud of our historical link with HMS Jupiter. Evesham adopted this vessel during WW2 as part of the War Weeks initiative and it is fitting that this link is recognised with the naming of a road in the town. I am sure that the name will instil a sense of pride in the new residents of Jupiter Road and give them a specific connection to Evesham’s recent past.”
Ken Williams, secretary of the HMS Jupiter Association, said: “The Evesham area adopted HMS Jupiter as its own and raised money for the ship. We appreciate that this special relationship is being remembered even after all these years.”
Pauline Turnbull, sales director for Redrow Homes (Midlands), added: “It’s a great honour to be able to remember those who served on board HMS Jupiter by naming one of the roads at Laburnum Gardens after the destroyer. It was a pleasure to be able to meet Mr Lock, who is without doubt a hero, and to celebrate what he and his comrades did for this country.”
Cllr. Lynne Duffy, chairman of Wychavon District Council, said “This is a fitting tribute and we have been honoured to be involved in this project. This is a lasting way to commemorate the town’s connection to HMS Jupiter.”
Remembering local history in the street names is in keeping with the ethos of the homes being built at Laburnum Gardens. The homes are taken from Redrow’s New Heritage Collection, which features traditional looking, ‘Arts & Crafts’ influenced homes with exteriors reminiscent of times gone by.
Showhomes at Laburnum Gardens are open daily from 10am to 5.30pm. For more information, call 01386244505 or see www.redrow.co.uk/laburnum.
Currently celebrating its 40th year, Redrow Homes is one of the UK’s leading house builders, operating across England and Wales, with a strong emphasis on high quality family housing in prime locations. Its Heritage Collection of family homes combines traditional looking, ‘Arts & Crafts’ influenced exteriors with bright, modern, high specification interiors. The company has won numerous awards over the years, including, most recently, the Gold Award for Best Large Housebuilder at the WhatHouse? Awards 2014, the 2014 Building Awards Housebuilder of the Year and four consecutive 5* awards in the Home Builder Federation (HBF) annual customer satisfaction survey. Redrow also collected the award for best marketing initiative at the 2014 Housebuilder Awards and its ‘My Redrow’ online tool won the overall Customer Engagement category at the 2013 Peer Awards for Excellence. Web: www.redrow.co.uk.