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Latitude: 53.4517 / 53°27'6"N
Longitude: -2.0522 / 2°3'7"W
OS Eastings: 396632
OS Northings: 394998
OS Grid: SJ966949
Mapcode National: GBR GX3J.HC
Mapcode Global: WHB9R.GH0P
Entry Name: Godley Hill War Memorial
Listing Date: 15 September 2016
Source: Historic England
Source ID: 1437980
Location: Tameside, SK14
Electoral Ward/Division: Hyde Godley
Parish: Non Civil Parish
Built-Up Area: Hyde (Tameside)
Traditional County: Cheshire
Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Greater Manchester
Church of England Parish: Godley-cum-Newton Green St John the Baptist
Church of England Diocese: Chester
First World War memorial, 1920, with later additions for the Second World War.
The memorial stands at the west side of Godley Hill Road, set in a circular garden enclosed by low stone walls with access through black-painted metal gates to the front. In front of the memorial stands a white marble flower vase, on the front of which the dedication IN/ MEMORY/ OF/ THE FALLEN/ GODLEY HILL is inscribed.
The memorial takes the form of a two-stepped base, square on plan, supporting a plinth surmounted by a slender granite obelisk. The base is surrounded by a small rockery, standing on a circular platform. Low ornamental metal posts fixed in the platform’s kerb carry a chain around the memorial.
The principal dedicatory inscription incised into the front face of the plinth reads ERECTED/ IN HONOUR/ AND DEEP GRATITUDE/ TO THE/ MEN WHO FOUGHT/ FOR/ LIBERTY AND FREEDOM/ IN THE/ GREAT WORLD WAR./ 1914 - 1919. The riser of the upper stage of the base bears the inscription UNVEILED BY/ DANIEL ADAMSON ESQ/ OF LONGLANDS,/ JULY 17TH 1920. The riser of the lower stage bears the inscription WILLOUGHBY WILDE/ & SONS HYDE.
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, 23 November 2017.
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. This was the result of both the huge impact on communities of the loss of three quarters of a million British lives, and also 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 Godley Hill as a permanent testament to the sacrifice made by the members of the local community who lost their lives in the First World War.
Godley Hill War Memorial was unveiled on 17 July 1920 by Mr Daniel Adamson, with Mr GH Turner, chairman of the memorial committee. The memorial was originally intended to be a tablet affixed to a building featuring a Roll of Honour but as the committee received more donations than anticipated, £130 was spent on a monument to bear the names of all who left Godley Hill. The memorial was provided by Willoughby, Wilde and Sons, Hyde (also responsible for the war memorials at Victoria Street in Newton, and Romiley, Stockport).
The unveiling ceremony, featuring many ex-servicemen, began with a parade led by members of the Audenshaw St Stephen’s Church Lads’ Brigade, marching from Godley Arches to Godley Hill. Speeches were made by Mr Turner and Mr Adamson. The names of five men who died and also those who served and returned are commemorated.
On 5 June 1949 the memorial was re-dedicated by Reverend Sam May, the Vicar of St John’s Church, Godley, to include the names of those five local men who had lost their lives in the Second World War. These names were unveiled by Mr EJ Cobbett who had attended the first ceremony in 1920.
Godley Hill War Memorial, which stands beside Godley Hill Road, is listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons:
* Historic interest: as an eloquent witness to the tragic impact of world events on the local community, and the sacrifice it made in the conflicts of the C20;
* Architectural interest: an elegant obelisk in the Classical style.
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