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Wretham War Memorial

A Grade II Listed Building in Wretham, Norfolk

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Latitude: 52.4799 / 52°28'47"N

Longitude: 0.8182 / 0°49'5"E

OS Eastings: 591480

OS Northings: 290616

OS Grid: TL914906

Mapcode National: GBR RCK.HPJ

Mapcode Global: VHKC1.4XFT

Plus Code: 9F42FRH9+W7

Entry Name: Wretham War Memorial

Listing Date: 30 August 2016

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1437723

Location: Wretham, Breckland, Norfolk, IP24

County: Norfolk

Civil Parish: Wretham

Traditional County: Norfolk

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Norfolk

Church of England Parish: Wretham St Ethelbert

Church of England Diocese: Norwich

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East Wretham


First World War memorial with Second World War additions.


MATERIALS: limestone.

DESCRIPTION: Wretham War Memorial comprises a Latin cross on a faceted square plinth and a two-stepped base.

The south face bears the dedicatory inscription: IN MEMORY OF THE MEN/ OF EAST AND WEST/ WRETHAM/ WHO FELL IN THE/ GREAT WARS/ 1914-1918/ 1939-1945. The north face reads THEIR NAME/ LIVETH/ FOR/ EVERMORE. The other faces have the lists of names incised on them.

At the base of the plinth is a slate plaque commemorating the visit of the 359th fighter group in 1985 which reads: THIS PLAQUE COMMEMORATES/ THE VISIT BY SURVIVORS OF THE/ 359TH FIGHTER GROUP/ IN REMEMBRANCE OF THOSE/ WHO SERVED AND DIED IN/ THE CAUSE OF FREEDOM/ 3RD AUGUST 1985.


The aftermath of the First World War saw the biggest single wave of public commemoration ever with tens of thousands of memorials erected across England, both as a result of the huge impact the loss of three quarters of a million British lives had on communities and the official policy of not repatriating the dead, which meant that the memorials provided the main focus of the grief felt at this great loss. One such memorial was raised at Wretham as a permanent testament to the sacrifice made by the members of the local community who lost their lives in the First World War. It commemorates 14 local servicemen who died during the First World War. Following the Second World War, a dedication was added to commemorate the one fallen of that conflict.

In 2012 the memorial was conserved with the help of grant aid from War Memorials Trust.

Reasons for Listing

Wretham War Memorial is listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons:
* Historic interest: as an eloquent witness to the tragic impact of world events on this community, and the sacrifices it has made in the conflicts of the C20;
* Architectural interest: a simple yet striking memorial cross;
* Group value: with the Church of St Ethelbert (Grade II*).

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