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Penge War Memorial

A Grade II Listed Building in Penge and Cator, London

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Latitude: 51.4165 / 51°24'59"N

Longitude: -0.0559 / 0°3'21"W

OS Eastings: 535289

OS Northings: 170399

OS Grid: TQ352703

Mapcode National: GBR JH.GL8

Mapcode Global: VHGRD.ZNBH

Entry Name: Penge War Memorial

Listing Date: 31 January 2017

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1441839

Location: Bromley, London, SE20

County: London

District: Bromley

London Borough Ward: Penge and Cator

Parish: Non Civil Parish

Built-Up Area: Bromley

Traditional County: Surrey

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Greater London

Church of England Parish: Penge St John the Evangelist

Church of England Diocese: Rochester

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First World War memorial, unveiled on 25 September 1925, with later additions for the Second World War.


First World War memorial, unveiled on 25 September 1925, with later additions for the Second World War.

MATERIALS: granite.

DESCRIPTION: the memorial comprises a Celtic cross upon a tapered plinth and two-stepped base, standing approximately 15ft high. A sword of sacrifice is carved into the cross.

The First World War dedicatory plaque includes a wreath in relief, and sits on the front face of the plinth. It reads ERECTED/ BY THE/ RESIDENTS OF PENGE/ TO THE/ GLORY OF GOD/ IN PROUD MEMORY OF THOSE/ WHO MADE/ THE SUPREME SACRIFICE/ IN/ THE GREAT WAR/ 1914-1918. Below this, plaques listing the names of the local men who perished are found on the front and both sides of the upper step.


The Second World War plaque was added in 1947, and sits above the First World War plaque at the base of the shaft. It reads ALSO/ IN MEMORY OF/ THE MEN AND WOMEN OF H.M. FORCES/ CIVIL DEFENCE AND CIVILIAN POPULATION/ OF PENGE/ WHO LOST THEIR LIVES/ IN THE SECOND WORLD WAR/ 1939 – 1945.

A plaque on the rear of the top step reads UNVEILED BY FRANCIS P. HODES ESQ. J.P/ CHAIRMAN OF THE/ PENGE URBAN DISTRICT COUNCIL/ 1921 - 22. A further plaque on the rear of the bottom step reads EBBUTT & SONS LTD /CROYDON


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 a result of both the huge impact on communities of the loss of three quarters of a million British lives, 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 Penge, as a permanent testament to the sacrifice made by the members of the local community who lost their lives in the First World War. The memorial was unveiled on 25 September 1925, by Councillor Francis P Hodes JP, with a dedication by the vicar of Penge, Reverend Canon Smyly. The memorial commemorates three hundred and ninety nine men of the parish who died during the First World War.

Following the Second World War, a plaque was added to the memorial in 1947 to commemorate those who lost their lives in that conflict. Two plaques were attached to the surrounding railings in c2014, which list the names of all local residents who were killed in the armed forces and civil defence during the Second World War. However, because they are not attached to the memorial they are not included in the listing.

Reasons for Listing

Penge War Memorial, which stands in a prominent location on Penge High Street, 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 sacrifices it made in the conflicts of the C20;
* Design: as a simple yet poignant Celtic cross;
* Group value: with a number of listed buildings, including the Church of St John the Evangelist, listed at Grade II.

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