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Hemsby War Memorial

A Grade II Listed Building in Hemsby, Norfolk

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Coordinates

Latitude: 52.6969 / 52°41'48"N

Longitude: 1.6905 / 1°41'25"E

OS Eastings: 649456

OS Northings: 317417

OS Grid: TG494174

Mapcode National: GBR YP5.VLT

Mapcode Global: WHNVK.YG4T

Plus Code: 9F43MMWR+Q5

Entry Name: Hemsby War Memorial

Listing Date: 1 June 2017

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1446281

Location: Hemsby, Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, NR29

County: Norfolk

Civil Parish: Hemsby

Built-Up Area: Hemsby

Traditional County: Norfolk

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Norfolk

Church of England Parish: Hemsby St Mary

Church of England Diocese: Norwich

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Summary


First World War memorial, wheel-head grey granite cross, on a plinth and step, within an enclosure defined by the churchyard wall including Second World War tablets and dedication.

Description

Hemsby war memorial is located in the churchyard of the Church of St Mary the Virgin (Grade II-listed), in close proximity to a Grade II-listed C14 cross base and to other listed churchyard monuments. The memorial cross faces the street, standing in a small enclosure with a curved brick and flint wall to the rear.

The memorial cross comprises a rough-hewn wheel-head cross in granite on a tapering plinth, standing on a low step. The principal dedicatory inscription to the front face of the plinth reads: ERECTED TO COMMEMORATE THE/ GREAT WAR 1914 – 1918/ AND IN REMEMBRANCE OF THOSE WHO FELL/ (20 NAMES).

On a stone string course set into the rear wall a quotation from 1 Samuel 25 v16 reads: THEY WERE A WALL UNTO US BOTH BY NIGHT AND DAY. A small Portland stone tablet in the wall, to the left, reads: IN MEMORY OF/ THOSE WHO GAVE THEIR LIVES/ IN THE WORLD WAR/ 1939 – 1945, with, on a similar tablet to the right, the commemorated names from this later conflict.

History

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 had been raised at Hemsby by 1927 to be 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 commemorates 20 local servicemen who died, and eight men who fell in the Second World War.

Originally the churchyard wall to the front was reduced in height and fitted with railings. This suggests that the brick and flint wall now to the rear of the memorial cross was built following the Second World War, to carry the later tablets and dedication. In 2006 the War Memorials Trust gave £335 towards underpinning and repairing the rear wall and repainting the inscriptions on the wall tablets.

Reasons for Listing

Hemsby War Memorial, which is situated in St Mary’s Churchyard, 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: as a simple, imposing wheel-head cross in granite, within a memorial enclosure formed of the churchyard wall in local materials including brick and flint cobbles;
* Group value: with the Grade II-listed Church of St Mary the Virgin, two Grade II-listed Cross Bases in the churchyard, and a pair of Coffin Lids in the churchyard (also Grade II).

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