The National Memorial Arboretum leased land from Lafarge,
a quarry company at Alrewas in Staffordshire in 1997. The first memorial was built on the site in 1998.

Veterans’ associations, regiments and other groups have since financed the dedication of trees and the erection of memorials, mostly commemorating conflicts involving British Armed forces since 1945.

In 2003, The Royal British Legion assumed responsibility
for the management of the Arboretum.