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Thurstaston War Memorial

A Grade II Listed Building in Wirral, Wirral

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Coordinates

Latitude: 53.3487 / 53°20'55"N

Longitude: -3.1322 / 3°7'55"W

OS Eastings: 324726

OS Northings: 384131

OS Grid: SJ247841

Mapcode National: GBR 6YKQ.P9

Mapcode Global: WH76D.V3N4

Plus Code: 9C5R8VX9+F4

Entry Name: Thurstaston War Memorial

Listing Date: 12 June 2019

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1463779

Location: Wirral, CH61

County: Wirral

Electoral Ward/Division: West Kirby and Thurstaston

Parish: Non Civil Parish

Traditional County: Cheshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Merseyside

Summary


First World War memorial, with Second World War additions.

Description

First World War memorial, with Second World War additions.

MATERIALS: pink-coloured Granite and concrete.

DESCRIPTION: Thurstaston War Memorial stands in the churchyard of the Church of St Bartholomew. It takes the form of a granite obelisk that has a relief-carved wreath tied with ribbons, at the base of its north-west face. The obelisk rises from a four-sided, pedimented plinth with a moulded cornice, surmounting a pedestal, mounted on a two-stepped chamfered base, which in turn stands on a stone slab. The monument stands on a square concrete dais, with a recessed, diamond-set feature, lined by narrow kerb stones.

The First World War dedication is cut into the north-west pediment and reads: IN/ LOVING MEMORY OF/ THOSE WHO FELL IN THE/ GREAT WAR 1914-1918. A relief-carved scroll on the pedestal below, records the six NAMES and reads: "THEIR NAME LIVETH FOR EVERMORE". The inscription records the awarding of a Military Medal, and a Victoria Cross. The Second World War dedication is carved onto the south-west pediment and reads: AND/ THOSE WHO FELL IN THE/ SECOND WORLD WAR 1939-1945. The 13 names of the Fallen from that conflict are inscribed into the south-west face of the pedestal. All lettering is incised, and has been highlighted in black paint.

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 was raised at Thurstaston as a permanent testament to the sacrifice made by six members of the local community, who lost their lives in the First World War.

Like many other memorials of the period, it was probably erected during the early 1920s and funded by subscription. The monument stands in a prominent position in front of the listed Grade II* Church of St Bartholomew. The inscription commemorate six local servicemen who died during the conflict and it is notable for including one recipient of the Military Medal and another, who received a Victoria Cross. Following the Second World War, the names of 13 additional casualties were added to the monument; the total being unusual for being greater than those recorded to have been killed in the First World War, but this probably reflects the expansion of the nearby village of Irby, during the 1920s and 1930s. The lettering of the memorial was restored in 1992 and once again in November 2013 in readiness for the 100th Commemorations of the First World War.

Reasons for Listing

Thurstaston War Memorial, of early 1920s date 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;

* the memorial is unusual as it commemorates the recipients of a Military Medal and a Victoria Cross, and a higher number of Second World War Fallen than First World War Fallen.

Architectural interest:
* a well-executed memorial in the form of a granite obelisk, rising off a pedimented plinth, which provides an elegant tribute to the Fallen of the parish.

Group value:
* it benefits from a spatial group value with a small group of Grade II and Grade II* listed buildings including Thurstaston Hall, and Church of St Bartholomew in whose churchyard it is located.

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