History in Structure

Swimbridge War Memorial

A Grade II Listed Building in Swimbridge, Devon

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Latitude: 51.0529 / 51°3'10"N

Longitude: -3.9691 / 3°58'8"W

OS Eastings: 262081

OS Northings: 130012

OS Grid: SS620300

Mapcode National: GBR KV.FY11

Mapcode Global: FRA 26KB.KJB

Plus Code: 9C3R323J+48

Entry Name: Swimbridge War Memorial

Listing Date: 24 May 2019

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1463734

ID on this website: 101463734

Location: St James' Church, Swimbridge, North Devon, EX32

County: Devon

District: North Devon

Civil Parish: Swimbridge

Built-Up Area: Swimbridge

Traditional County: Devon

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Devon

Tagged with: War memorial


First World War memorial with later additions for the Second World War, set within an enclosure formed by eight granite posts joined by chains.


First World War memorial with later additions for the Second World War.

MATERIALS: constructed of granite.

DESCRIPTION: comprising a plain obelisk on a moulded capital above a substantial square tapered plinth and a two-stepped base. It sits inside a square enclosure formed by eight granite posts joined together by chains.

The main inscription reads: (south face) TO THE GLORIOUS DEAD/ (7 NAMES); (west face) (7 NAMES); (north face) 1914/ + / 1919; (east face) (7 NAMES). An additional inscription on a rectangular plaque attached to the north face of the plinth reads: 1939 1945/ (5 NAMES).


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 Swimbridge 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 names of five parishioners who fell during the Second World War were subsequently added to the memorial. The date of construction is not known, however the war memorial was in place by the 1930s and is shown on the Ordnance Survey Map of 1956.

The memorial stands in the churchyard, to the north-west of the Church of St James (Grade I) and a short distance from the lychgate (Grade II).

Reasons for Listing

Swimbridge War Memorial is listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons:

Historic interest:

* 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 well-crafted war memorial in the form of a granite obelisk enclosed by granite posts and chains.

Group value:

* it has group value with the Grade I listed Church of St James and its lychgate (Grade II).

External Links

External links are from the relevant listing authority and, where applicable, Wikidata. Wikidata IDs may be related buildings as well as this specific building. If you want to add or update a link, you will need to do so by editing the Wikidata entry.

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