Royal Artillery Memorial of the South African War

Overview

Heritage Category: Listed Building

Grade: II*

List Entry Number: 1273903

Date first listed: 05-Feb-1970

Date of most recent amendment: 31-Oct-2016

Statutory Address: Royal Artillery Memorial of the South African War, St James's Park, The Mall, SW1A2BJ

Map

Ordnance survey map of Royal Artillery Memorial of the South African War
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Location

Statutory Address: Royal Artillery Memorial of the South African War, St James's Park, The Mall, SW1A2BJ

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

County: Greater London Authority

District: City of Westminster (London Borough)

Parish: Non Civil Parish

National Grid Reference: TQ2981180158

Summary

A regimental war memorial of 1906-10. The pedestal and concave screen wall were designed by Aston Webb and the sculptural elements by William Colton.

Reasons for Designation

The Royal Artillery Monument, The Mall, St James's Park, London is statutorily listed at Grade II* for the following principal reasons:

* Quality of design: a war memorial of clear architectural and sculptural quality, designed by two well-respected artists;

* Historic interest: as a memorial to the fallen men of the Royal Artillery who gave their lives in the Boer War;

* Planning interest: as a part of the Victoria Monument Scheme which re-shaped and aggrandized this part of central London.

History

Aston Webb’s involvement in planning the revised layout of The Mall was large in scale and encompassed the new façade for Buckingham Palace (1913), the area in front of the palace which featured the Victoria Monument (1904-24), a widened roadway for The Mall, flanked by four rows of trees, and Admiralty Arch at the eastern end (c.1905). The Royal Artillery Memorial was designed as part of this overall scheme and helped to emphasise the juncture of The Mall with Waterloo Place and Lower Regent’s Street, which in turn led up to Piccadilly Circus and onwards to Regent’s Park, via Regent’s Street. Webb was knighted in 1904.

William Colton had earlier (1908) designed the Boer War memorial in Webb's home city of Worcester (Grade II*). It is placed on the north side of the cathedral in College Yard, and shows the winged figures of the Angel of Victory with a serviceman.

The monument was unveiled by HRH Prince Arthur, Duke of Connaught KG on 20 July 1910.

Details

A regimental war memorial of 1906-10. The pedestal and concave screen wall were designed by Sir Aston Webb and the sculptural elements by William Colton ARA.

MATERIALS & PLAN: a granite plinth, supporting the Portland stone memorial, with bronze sculpture and relief panels. The monument faces north onto The Mall and has a crescent-shaped screen wall to its south side. Steps lead up to a platform and a square pedestal stands to the north of the wall, topped by a bronze sculptural group.

The memorial is set in St James’s Park, to the south side of The Mall and facing north towards Waterloo Place and in line with the Duke of York Column (Grade I) and the Statue of King Edward VII (Grade II). The north front has a shaped plinth projecting towards the pedestrian pavement approached by five steps. To the rear of the monument is a wall of plain Portland stone blocks, topped by a moulded cornice, and with a series of horizontal bronze plaques forming a frieze. These bear the following wording in relief: ‘ERECTED BY THE OFFICERS AND MEN OF THE ROYAL ARTILLERY IN MEMORY OF THEIR HONOURED DEAD. SOUTH AFRICA. 1899-1902’. Terminating the wall at either side are stone piers with domed tops and segmental pediments, which have the initials 'E' and 'R' in bronze, surrounded by wreaths. Their north sides bear bronze plaques showing scenes of war in high relief; soldiers of the regiment transporting their arms over hilly terrain, at right, and the Royal Artillery Corps in action, to the left. To their flanks are further bronze plaques with the names of the fallen in relief. At the centre of the raised plinth is a square pedestal with chamfered corners. This has a deeply moulded entablature, the frieze of which represents gun carriages and horses at the gallop in high relief. Above the projecting plinth is a further band of bronze relief which shows the regimental mottos: ‘UBIQUE’ (Everywhere) at the centre, north side and ‘QUO. FAS / ET / GLORIA / DUCUNT ‘ (Where Right and Glory lead) to either flank. To the top of the pedestal is a sculpted bronze group, showing the winged figure of Fame controlling a horse (representative of War) by its bridle. The curved rear wall is blank, save for the projecting plinth and cornice.

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, 10 February 2017.

Legacy

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

Legacy System number: 416819

Legacy System: LBS

Sources

Books and journals
Byron, A, London Statues, (1981), 357
Gleichen, E W, London's Open-Air Statues, (1928), 50
Pevsner, N, Bradley, S, The Buildings of England: London 6 Westminster, (2003), 655
Websites
War Memorials Online, accessed 10 February 2017 from https://www.warmemorialsonline.org.uk/memorial/112037
War Memorials Register, accessed 10 February 2017 from http://www.iwm.org.uk/memorials/item/memorial/11570
Other
Royal Academy of Arts Library and Archive. Ref: WTW/8 (letter from Wm. Colton)

End of official listing