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East Malling War Memorial

A Grade II Listed Building in Ditton, Kent

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Coordinates

Latitude: 51.2877 / 51°17'15"N

Longitude: 0.4393 / 0°26'21"E

OS Eastings: 570195

OS Northings: 157107

OS Grid: TQ701571

Mapcode National: GBR NPL.9WH

Mapcode Global: VHJM5.KWMR

Entry Name: East Malling War Memorial

Listing Date: 24 June 2010

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1393853

English Heritage Legacy ID: 508120

Location: East Malling and Larkfield, Tonbridge and Malling, Kent, ME19

County: Kent

District: Tonbridge and Malling

Civil Parish: East Malling and Larkfield

Built-Up Area: Ditton

Traditional County: Kent

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Kent

Church of England Parish: East Malling St James

Church of England Diocese: Rochester

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West Malling

Listing Text


EAST MALLING AND LARKFIELD

1347/0/10028 CORNER OF CHURCH WALK AND HIGH STREET
24-JUN-10 East Malling war memorial

GV II
War memorial, 1922 in stone, designed by John Ninian Comper and carved by William Drinkwater Gough

DESCRIPTION: The memorial takes the form of a Gothic churchyard cross, comprising a tall octagonal stone column with a square base, stepped octagonal plinth and crenellated top, crowned by a canopy comprising four foliated ogee arches and a slender pyramidal finial. Within the arches are high-relief carvings of religious scenes (the Crucifixion, the Virgin and Child, St George and the dragon, and St Martin of Tours) and heraldic shields. On the base of the cross is carved a laurel wreath, inscribed 'TO THE MEN OF THIS PARISH WHO GAVE THEIR LIVES IN THE GREAT WAR 1914-1919'. The names of 53 villagers killed in the First World War are inscribed on the plinth, along with a further 45 added after World War Two.

HISTORY: The war memorial at East Malling was erected to commemorate village men killed in action in the First World War. It was unveiled by Admiral Sir Doveton Sturdee, hero of the Battle of the Falkland Islands, at a ceremony on 31 October 1920. Further names were added to the monument to commemorate those killed in the Second World War.

Sir John Ninian Comper (1864-1960) was one of the last major architects of the Gothic Revival. Born in Aberdeen, he initially trained with the glass painter CE Kempe before being articled to the great church architect GF Bodley. During his long career he designed a number of churches, the most famous being his lavish St Mary the Virgin at Wellingborough (1904-31), but the majority of his output took the form of church fittings, stained glass, vestments and monuments, executed in a style that increasingly fused English late Gothic with Classical and Byzantine motifs. He designed many memorials in the aftermath of the First World War, ranging from major projects like the Warriors' Chapel at Westminster Abbey (1925) and the Welsh National War Memorial at Cardiff (1928) to numerous village monuments like those at Oakham, Rutland and Uppingham, Leicestershire. The latter three were, like East Malling, executed in collaboration with William Drinkwater Gough (c.1861-1938), a mason and sculptor based in Kennington, south London, who later went on to work with Giles Gilbert Scott on projects including Ampleforth Abbey, North Yorkshire and the church of St Alphege at Bath.

SOURCES: Anthony Symondson and Stephen Bucknall, Sir Ninian Comper (2006).
Terry Kavanagh, Public Sculpture of Leicestershire and Rutland (2000).
UK National Inventory of War Memorials, at http://www.ukniwm.org.uk/server/show/conMemorial.41293/fromUkniwmSearch/1, accessed on 10 February 2010.
Website of St Alphege's Church, Bath, at http://www.saintalphege.org.uk/, accessed on 10 February 2010.

REASONS FOR DESIGNATION: The East Malling War Memorial of 1922, designed by John Ninian Comper and carved by William Drinkwater Gough, is listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons:
* Historic interest: commemorating those members of the community who died in the two World Wars;
* Architectural interest: a sensitive medievalising design by a major architect, executed to a high standard of craftsmanship;
* Group value: with several listed buildings at the centre of the village.

This List entry has been amended to add sources for War Memorials Online and the War Memorials Register. These sources were not used in the compilation of this List entry but are added here as a guide for further reading, 1 December 2016.

This text is from the original listing, and may not necessarily reflect the current setting of the building.

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