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Spetisbury War Memorial

A Grade II Listed Building in Spetisbury, Dorset

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Latitude: 50.8255 / 50°49'31"N

Longitude: -2.1295 / 2°7'46"W

OS Eastings: 390971

OS Northings: 102897

OS Grid: ST909028

Mapcode National: GBR 1ZX.2G2

Mapcode Global: FRA 66FX.G5J

Entry Name: Spetisbury War Memorial

Listing Date: 6 February 2017

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1441320

Location: Spetisbury, North Dorset, Dorset, DT11

County: Dorset

District: North Dorset

Civil Parish: Spetisbury

Built-Up Area: Spetisbury

Traditional County: Dorset

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Dorset

Church of England Parish: Spetisbury St John the Baptist

Church of England Diocese: Salisbury

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First World War memorial, unveiled on 14 September 1919 with further names added after the Second World War.


MATERIALS: Ham Hill stone.

DESCRIPTION: Spetisbury War Memorial is located within the churchyard of the Church of St John the Baptist. It consists of a Latin cross rising from an octagonal tapering shaft. The shaft is set upon an octagonal plinth on top of a three-stepped base.

The inscriptions were originally incised into the stone. At a later date these have been replaced with incised plaques fixed to two faces with 1914 – 1918/ (NAMES) incised on them. The main dedication remains incised into the stone and reads TO THE GLORY/ OF GOD AND THE/ PROUD MEMORY/ OF THE MEN OF/ HIS VILLAGE/ WHO DIED IN THE/ CAUSE OF LIBERTY/ 1914 – 1919. The other faces still faintly show the names as originally inscribed. Across the bottom step is an inclined stone tablet inscribed with 1939 – 1945/ (NAMES).


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 Spetisbury as a permanent testament to the sacrifice made by the members of the local community who lost their lives in the First World War. Rev A Field heading a committee had ensured that the donations for a memorial were collected and the memorial was raised in the churchyard in 1919 commemorating 15 local servicemen who fell during the First World War. 

The memorial was unveiled by Colonel H R G Deacon DSO on Sunday 14 September 1919 and dedicated by the Bishop of Salisbury.

Following the Second World War, a dedication was added to commemorate the three fallen of that conflict.

Reasons for Listing

Spetisbury 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 dignified Ham Hill stone Latin cross;
* Group value: with the Church St John the Baptist (Grade I) and a listed tomb in the churchyard (Grade II).

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