Plans for an International Brigade memorial in the south of Madrid

Post date: 15/09/2017

Message from the AABI, the Madrid-based association of friends of the International Brigades…


Next 5 November we will inaugurate a new monument to the International Brigades in Vicálvaro, Madrid. Three battalions of the 11th International Brigade arrived on 5 November 1936 at Vallecas (Edgar André and Commune de Paris Battalions) and at Vicálvaro (Dombrowski Battalion).  Furthermore, the headquarters of the 11th International Brigade was located in Vicálvaro for a month. 


All this prompted the AABI to decide to raise a memorial to remember and honour the arrival of these international volunteers who supported the defence of Madrid against the fascist attack.


One year ago, on 29 November 2016, the Garden of the International Brigades was inaugurated in Vicálvaro, with the attendance of Brigader Josep Almudéver (France), local authorities and delegations from 15 countries that had participated in the week dedicated to commemorate the 80th anniversary of the formation of the International Brigades. 


That event closed the 80th anniversary programme of events held in Paris, Benicassim and Albacete. But we felt that a street name was not enough.  


Since the beginning last, the AABI worked on this project to create a monument to the International Brigades. The design was entrusted to Cinabrio Quijano, an artist from La Mancha, who, from the beginning, donated the idea and drawings of the monument to the AABI.



Obstacles of all kinds, mainly bureaucratic, delayed the project and finally the installation proposal presented at the city council did not receive the appropriate authorisation in time for 26 November 2016. 


The project was therefore postponed until obtaining the municipal planning permission. This was a slow process, since it had to fulfill the established requirements, and it took many months due to the magnitude and complexity of the municipal administration of Madrid. We finally obtained the definitive authorisation in June this year.


We want to inaugurate this monument on Sunday 5 November 2017, on the occasion of the 81st anniversary of the arrival of the 11th International Brigade in Vallecas and Vicálvaro. The Garden of the International Brigades and the memorial will perpetuate the memory of those volunteers from all over the world who came to defend Madrid and the Spanish Republic from the attack of Franco's troops and the weapons of Hitler and Mussolini.

Now we have to work to secure the complete financing of the monument. These are the approximate figures:

– Design of memorial: 0 euros

– Material (stone from Colmenar de Oreja) and carving: 4,800 euros

– Project architecture 2,420 euros

– Geotechnical study: 598 euros

– Installation: 3,630 euros

– Plaque 600 euros

TOTAL: 12,048 euros


Last year we started the fundraising campaign and managed to add a little more than 3,000 euros, resulting from the sale of aid bonds and individual contributions that have been coming from Spain and other countries such as Switzerland, the UK and others. 


This year we have opened a crowdfunding campaign to finance the expenses of the memorial and the inauguration day, and you can make a donation through the following link:


You can also send your donation to: AABI - Asociación de Amigos de las Brigadas Internacionales

IBAN: ES31 2038 0603 2760 0676 8006


We expect to be able to finance the monument thanks to the generosity of all and every friend of the International Brigades.


Posted on 15 September 2017.

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