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Castlethorpe War Memorial

A Grade II Listed Building in Castlethorpe, Milton Keynes

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Latitude: 52.0931 / 52°5'35"N

Longitude: -0.8344 / 0°50'3"W

OS Eastings: 479947

OS Northings: 244506

OS Grid: SP799445

Mapcode National: GBR BY2.RV3

Mapcode Global: VHDSS.HN78

Entry Name: Castlethorpe War Memorial

Listing Date: 29 August 2018

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1457920

Location: Castlethorpe, Milton Keynes, MK19

County: Milton Keynes

Civil Parish: Castlethorpe

Traditional County: Buckinghamshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Buckinghamshire


First World War memorial, unveiled 1921, with later additions for the Second World War.


The c5m tall Portland stone memorial stands in the stone-walled former village Pound, to the east of the Grade I-listed Church of St Simon and St Jude. The memorial comprises a tall, tapering, pylon, raised on a two-stage base. The plain lower stage is surmounted by a capped plinth with curved, fluted and buttressed corner stones. The square-sectioned pylon rises from the plinth, with inset panels to each face. The pylon’s cap includes a simple cornice with dentils. A short obelisk is mounted on the cap. The obelisk’s front face is ornamented with a laurel wreath carved in relief.

The inscription to the front face of the pylon reads TO/ THE HONOURED/ MEMORY OF/ OUR/ BRAVE FALLEN/ (9 NAMES)/ 1939 – 1945/ (1 NAME). Each of the other three faces are headed ROLL OF HONOUR with lists of the names of the servicemen who returned having served during the First World War. The dedication to the front face of the upper stage of the base reads ERECTED/ IN GRATEFUL RECOGNITION OF/ THE MEN OF THIS VILLAGE/ WHO SERVED IN THE GREAT WAR/ 1914 - 1918.


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 Castlethorpe as a permanent testament to the sacrifice made by nine members of the local community who lost their lives in the First World War, and the 66 men who served but returned.

The location of the memorial is the site of the former village Pound, which was donated to the village by the Marquis of Lincolnshire, the Lord Lieutenant of Buckinghamshire. It is approached from the south by a flight of five stone steps into the walled area. The memorial was designed by AW Wilson of Bradwell, Milton Keynes and built by AW Gurney, monumental mason of New Bradwell and Wolverton. The cost of the memorial was £200 and there were associated costs of £35.

The Marquis had been due to conduct the unveiling on 2 April 1921 but was indisposed and his brother, Colonel the Hon Rupert Carrington deputised. The well-attended ecumenical ceremony was led by Reverend WJ Harkness and Reverend J Johns.

Following the Second World War, the name of one local man who died in that conflict was added to the memorial.

Reasons for Listing

Castlethorpe War Memorial, which stands outside the parish church, 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:

* an elegant and unusual Portland stone memorial, in the Classical style.

Group value:

* with the Church of St Simon and St Jude (Grade I-listed), Elm Tree Cottage (Grade II), and the scheduled area of Castlethorpe Castle.

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