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Looking After War Memorials

This page is aimed at anyone who manages or cares for a war memorial or a memorial garden. It provides practical advice to help you conserve, protect and maintain these unique monuments that stand at the heart of almost every community.

Conserving war memorials

For detailed and comprehensive advice on conserving and repairing war memorials, including how to carry out condition surveys, specify works, carry out maintenance and prevent theft, please see:

The Conservation, Repair and Management of War Memorials

The Conservation, Repair and Management of War Memorials

Published 11 June 2015

Guidance and best practice on the understanding, assessment, planning and implementation of conservation work to war memorials as well as their ongoing maintenance and protection.

Conserving war memorial landscapes

Advice on conserving and managing war memorial landscapes has been developed in partnership with War Memorials Trust, the Garden History Society and Historic Scotland.

Conservation and Management of War Memorial Landscapes

Conservation and Management of War Memorial Landscapes

Published 27 January 2016

The aim of this updated guidance provides an overview of how to plan projects. It aims to address queries often raised by volunteers, and draws on the experience of public parks and garden restoration projects.

Assessing and recording condition

Civic Voice have produced a film showing you how to survey the condition of your war memorial:

Watch Civic Voice's condition survey tutorial

Cleaning war memorials

Sensitive removal of disfiguring and damaging soiling and biological growth is an essential part of maintaining war memorials.

For guidance and best practice, please see:

Conserving War Memorials

Conserving War Memorials

Published 14 June 2017

This technical advice note describes good practice for cleaning war memorials, outlining a step-by-step approach to aid decisions on whether cleaning is necessary and the range of techniques available.

Conserving incised inscriptions

Inscriptions are fundamental to the purpose and significance of a war memorial. Given the age of most memorials, perfect preservation of their inscriptions is unlikely, but legibility nevertheless remains a critical consideration when assessing the overall condition of a memorial and establishing the need for any intervention.

You can find out more about conserving incised inscriptions on stone war memorials by watching videos on the following subjects:

  • Condition & Legibility
  • Inpainting
  • Gilding
  • Recutting
  • Replacement

Structural issues and repairs

Understanding if there are structural issues and the causes of them is fundamental. For guidance and best practice about identifying and diagnosing these and the options for addressing them, please see:

Conserving War Memorials

Conserving War Memorials

Published 14 June 2017

This technical note describes good practice for diagnosing and understanding the structural problems found in war memorials, with a focus on freestanding masonry and memorials built of concrete.

Funding conservation of war memorials

There are a number of different sources of funding for war memorials, particularly during these centenary years of the First World War. These may include bodies such as the Heritage Lottery Fund and your local authority.

For comprehensive information on funding conservation work for war memorials, visit the Grants section of War Memorials Trust's website.

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