Muncaster War Memorial and area wall


Heritage Category:
Listed Building
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Statutory Address:
A595, Muncaster


Ordnance survey map of Muncaster War Memorial and area wall
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Statutory Address:
A595, Muncaster

The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

Copeland (District Authority)
National Park:
National Grid Reference:
SD 09062 96684


First World War memorial, 1922, by Sir Edwin Lutyens.

Reasons for Designation

Muncaster War Memorial is listed at Grade II for the following principle reasons:

* Historic interest: as an eloquent witness to the tragic impacts of world events on this community, and the sacrifices it made in the First World War;

* Architect: by the nationally renowned architect Sir Edwin Landseer Lutyens (1869-1944), who designed extant 58 memorials at home and abroad including the Cenotaph in Whitehall;

* Design: a simple yet elegant War Cross, fashioned from a local stone.


Lutyens had visited Muncaster Castle to discuss a possible scheme of alterations for Sir John Ramsden. Nothing came of this, but in 1919 Sir John commissioned Lutyens to design a war memorial in the form of a cross, symbolising the sacrifice of the troops. The memorial was unveiled in September 1922 by Mrs Cowan from Ravenglass, who had lost three sons in the war, and a daughter to typhoid.

Sir Edwin Lutyens OM RA (1869-1944) was the leading English architect of his generation. Before the First World War his reputation rested on his country houses and his work at New Delhi, but during and after the war he became the pre-eminent architect for war memorials in England, France and the British Empire. While the Cenotaph in Whitehall (London) had the most influence on other war memorials, the Thiepval Arch was the most influential on other forms of architecture. He designed the Stone of Remembrance which was placed in all Imperial War Graves Commission cemeteries and in some cemeteries in England, including some with which he was not otherwise associated.


The memorial stands by the roadside on the main road between Barrow-in-Furness and Gosforth (near Seascale) at the road junction leading to the coastal village of Ravenglass. It comprises a war cross of Lakeland granite, the shaft lozenge sectioned, which tapers into a rectangular plinth. That carries the inscription TO/ THE MEN OF/ MUNCASTER/ WHO FELL IN/THE GREAT WAR. Beneath is a laurel wreath carved in relief, the only example among Lutyens’ memorials of this type. There is a base of three broad, square, shallow steps. The memorial is set within a shallow, stone-walled, recess, with the names of the fallen from both world wars inscribed on blocks inset into the wall.

This list entry was subject to a Minor Amendment on 14/10/2015

This List entry has been amended to add sources for War Memorials Online and the War Memorials Register. These sources were not used in the compilation of this List entry but are added here as a guide for further reading, 2 February 2017.


The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System number:
Legacy System:


Books and journals
Skelton, T, Gliddon, G, Lutyens and the Great War, (2008), 32, 81-2, 174
War Memorials Online, accessed 2 February 2017 from
War Memorials Register, accessed 2 February 2017 from


This building is listed under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 as amended for its special architectural or historic interest.

End of official listing

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