In May, 2016, representatives from local schools, churches and societies joined with Stone Quakers, Staffordshire, to unveil a Peace Pole.
A Peace Pole is a monument that displays the message “May Peace Prevail on Earth” in the language of the country where it has been placed, and usually 3 to 13 additional translations.
On the Stone pole this message is repeated in Polish, Russian, Spanish, Chinese, Arabic, Hebrew, Urdu and Braille.
The message often is referred to as a peace prayer, but sometimes it is not in order to avoid peace poles from being regarded as religious objects.
The idea of Peace Poles was first thought up by Masahisa Goi in 1955 in Japan. The Peace Pole Project today is promoted by The World Peace Prayer Society as well as other groups and individuals. The first Peace Poles outside Japan were constructed in 1983. Since then, more than 100,000 have been placed around the world in over 180 countries.
Peter Holland, of Stone Quakers, explains:
“Peace Poles are not ‘anti-war’ but more ‘pro-peace’, more about trying to resolve differences through justice and mutual respect. We can all learn how to do it.”
Peace Poles appear in the gardens of several Meeting Houses across the world, for example this Dove carving appears on a Peace Pole in Nottingham.