I found this article in the 1911-12 issue of the Natal Police Magazine, Nongqai. Reading this, the questions is begged ; why did it take +- 33 years, post the event, to erect these memorials to the men from both regiments who had made the supreme sacrifice for Queen and Country.
Memorial to men of the Natal Mounted Police
In July 1911, at the general meeting of the NMP and NP Association, I brought up the question of erecting a cairn, or memorial on the field at Isandlwana, to those of our comrades who fell on 22/01/1879, as also to those who fell at Rorke’ Drift, and also to those members who died at Helpmekaar during the war.
I took no action on this matter until December, when I issued subscription lists to all District Officers in the Natal Police. The subscriptions were limited to 5/- , and I am very pleased to say , that with one or two exceptions , I have received these lists back with substantial contributions , so that up to the present I have something between £40 to £50 already collected.
These amounts which will not be sufficient to erect a suitable memorial. However it is hoped to get more contributions from ex members of the force, once their addresses can be obtained.
It is hoped to get this memorial erected as soon as possible and with this end in view, those who have not subscribed yet, are asked to do so as soon as possible.
So, as soon as everything is in order, it is proposed to form a small committee to decide on the form the memorial will take , and to also supervise the erection of same. Although there is a stained glass window and a tablet in the small church at Isandlwana ( also a tablet in St Peters church in Pietermaritzburg), yet it was felt that a memorial should be erected on the field in which the men fell.
An ex member of the force has been good enough to promise to transport all of the material up to the site free of charge and I intend approaching the Government for free railage to the nearest railway station, so that we can be put to as little expense as possible.
A Force such as the NMP and later the NP, who have done such excellent service in South Africa, deserve to have their services recognized in a public manner, and when it is noticed that all units other than “the noble 24th” and the NMP have a memorial in the field , it is our duty to show that we recognize the noble sacrifice that these men made to Queen and Country.
I would in conclusion make an appeal to those who have not yet subscribed to do so at once, in order that we may proceed with the erection of the memorial.
signed ; W.Knott. ex NMP
Footnote by the editor of the Nongqai : We understand that that the South Wales Borderers , “the gallant 1/24th Regiment” are about to erect a memorial to their men who were killed on that fatal day at Isandlwana, and thus the NMP, will be the only unit whose names are not memorialized on the battlefield, if we don’t act on the proposal.