THE ORIGINS OF THE PROPERTY ON WHICH IS SITUATED MEMORIAL PARK, KLOOF
In February 1947, the land on which Memorial park is situated, was given to the local Town board as a memorial to those Kloof residents who died in World War 11.
Originally part of a large farm, Farm Richmond was owned by William Swan Field, and his brother John who inherited the farm in 1867. On John’s death, the farm was subdivided into 12 lots for 11 children and 1 grandchild.
One of the portions was then called ‘Springdale’ by Nicholas Field, and his wife Sophia later established a dairy herd on Springdale which she sold to Douglas F. Johnson in 1934 for 600 pounds. Sophia built a house at the top of her farm next to the railway adjacent to where Makaranga Lodge is today.
World War II
On 26 Jan 1942 John Reginald Hickmanwas killed in action in the Middle East. At the time he was a Bombadier serving with the 2nd Anti-Tank Regiment, South African Artillery.
On 25 August 1943 Ronald Douglas Johnson was killed in an air-raid whilst a prisoner-of-war in Italy. He was a Private serving with the Technical Services Corps, Union Defence Force. Both these young men were direct descendants of the Field family.
In total, there were 7 Kloof residents who died during the war. There is a circle of liquid ambertrees (Liquidambar Styraciflua) planted in a wide circle near the stream in the park which were planted in their honour.
John and Ronald’s sister Olive Jonnes continued to live in the area, and passed away.
There is a memorial plaque and an indigenous Olive tree (Olea Africana) planted near the noticeboards in Memorial Park, in her honour.
Information and photographs courtesy Adrian Rowe.