A village war memorial could be getting a facelift soon, ahead of the centenary commemoration for the start of the First World War.

Semington Parish Council has been working with local historian Ray Heard to refurbish the memorial, so that the names of villagers who died in both world wars and the Korean War can be clearly read.

After a month of fundraising, the council has already surpassed its target and has started looking for contractors to complete the work.

Parish clerk Roger Coleman said: “People have been very generous; the initial target was about £1,500 and we’re at £1,870.

“We’ve had some very generous donations from local firms, and cash donations from individuals.

“The campaign didn’t start until the beginning of December, as no-one wanted it to clash with the Remembrance Day commemorations.”

Mr Heard added: “The names are beginning to fade, so we wanted to restore them, and then we realised we could add more names to it.

“In the church behind the pulpit there is a wooden board with a further list of names, which came from a chapel that used to be in the village.

“The anniversary is in July this year, so ideally we need to start commissioning the work within the next month or so.

“We’re thinking we could get the vicar to re-consecrate it, and have a ceremony with the local schoolchildren to mark the centenary.”

Donations for the appeal can still be made at the post office in the village hall on Mondays and Thursdays between 9.30am and 1pm.