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Terrington St John War Memorial Cross

A Grade II Listed Building in King's Lynn, Norfolk

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Latitude: 52.7183 / 52°43'5"N

Longitude: 0.278 / 0°16'40"E

OS Eastings: 553960

OS Northings: 315842

OS Grid: TF539158

Mapcode National: GBR M2M.K36

Mapcode Global: WHJP5.7XMY

Plus Code: 9F42P79H+85

Entry Name: Terrington St John War Memorial Cross

Listing Date: 8 August 2018

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1457533

Location: Terrington St. John, King's Lynn and West Norfolk, Norfolk, PE14

County: Norfolk

District: King's Lynn and West Norfolk

Civil Parish: Terrington St. John

Traditional County: Norfolk

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Norfolk


First World War memorial cross, with Second World War additions.


The stone war memorial stands in the churchyard of the Church of Saint John (Grade I-listed), in close proximity to The Vicarage (Grade II) and numerous Grade II-listed churchyard monuments. It comprises a stone cross pattée rising from the heavily moulded collar of the cross shaft, octagonal in section. The cross shaft stands on a pedestal, square on plan. The pedestal has dentilated upper edge moulding and a shallow foot, standing on a three-stepped octagonal base.

The pedestal bears the inscriptions on a polished stone plaque. The principal dedicatory inscription, incised and painted, reads IN MEMORY OF THOSE WHO GAVE/ THEIR LIVES IN THE WARS/ 1914 – 1919/ (NAMES)/ 1939 – 1945/ (NAMES).

The later white stone plaque, which is attached on top of the original inscribed lettering, records the historic information but is not of special interest in its own right. It is the original structure that has special interest.


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 Terrington St John as a permanent testament to the sacrifice made by 13 members of the local community who lost their lives in the First World War. They include 15-year-old Arthur Dawson (d1914), a Boy Scout who died from the injuries he sustained in a shooting accident. At the time he was serving as a Sea Scout at the Admiralty Point Coastguard Station, overlooking the Lynn Channel at the mouth of the River Great Ouse. Following the Second World War the names of two men who died in that conflict were added to the memorial.

A stone tablet carrying the inscriptions has been added to the front face of the pedestal, covering the original inscription.

Reasons for Listing

Terrington St John War Memorial, which stands in the 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:

* a tall and elegant memorial cross.

Group value:

* with the Church of St John (Grade I), The Vicarage (Grade II) and numerous Grade II-listed churchyard monuments.

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