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Hempnall War Memorial

A Grade II Listed Building in Hempnall, Norfolk

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Latitude: 52.5049 / 52°30'17"N

Longitude: 1.2944 / 1°17'39"E

OS Eastings: 623677

OS Northings: 294768

OS Grid: TM236947

Mapcode National: GBR VHS.XQV

Mapcode Global: VHL8R.D94L

Plus Code: 9F43G73V+XP

Entry Name: Hempnall War Memorial

Listing Date: 15 March 2017

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1443914

Location: Hempnall, South Norfolk, Norfolk, NR15

County: Norfolk

Civil Parish: Hempnall

Built-Up Area: Hempnall

Traditional County: Norfolk

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Norfolk

Church of England Parish: Hempnall St Margaret

Church of England Diocese: Norwich

Tagged with: War memorial

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First World War memorial, unveiled 1919, with Second World War additions. Elaborate wheel head stone cross on a plinth with rusticated base.


Hempnall War Memorial is located on a small green at the junction of Broaden Lane and The Street, c40m to the east of The Thatched House (Grade II-listed). It comprises a stone wheel-head cross with detailed carvings of the rose, iris, grape and Passion of Christ flowers on each arm of the cross, and a Tudor rose motif at the centre. The wheel of the cross-head includes small floral carvings.

The cross head surmounts a straight shaft with simply-moulded foot and a wreath carved in relief towards the upper part to front and rear. The shaft rises from a tapering plinth with double-moulded cap and sloping foot step. This stands on a large stone base given rusticated surface detailing.

The principal dedicatory inscription, repeated to the front and rear faces of the cross shaft underneath the carved wreaths, reads TO/ THE GLORY/ OF GOD/ 1914-1918 with the commemorated names listed on two faces of the plinth. The Second World War dedication, to the east face of the plinth, reads TO THE GLORY OF/ GOD/ 1939-1945/ (NAMES).

The memorial stands within a small gravelled enclosure bounded by four low posts that carry spiked chains. The south-eastern post is inscribed COMMEMORATION/ OF THE/ KING’S/ SILVER JUBILEE/ 1935.

This List entry has been amended to add the source for War Memorials Register. This source was not used in the compilation of this List entry but is added here as a guide for further reading, 25 July 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: therefore the memorials provided the main focus of the grief felt at this great loss.

One such memorial was raised at Hempnall 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 was unveiled by the Honourable WH Cozens-Hardy MP, in December 1919. The memorial commemorates 21 local servicemen who died in the First World War, most of whom were volunteers, and five men who died in the Second World War.

Reasons for Listing

Hempnall War Memorial, which stands in the junction of Broaden Lane and The 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 this local community, and the sacrifice it has made in the conflicts of the C20;
* Architectural interest: a well-ornamented wheel-head cross combining symbols of commemoration including flowers and wreaths;
* Group value: with The Thatched House (Grade II).

External Links

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