Wargrave War Memorial
Heritage Category: Listed Building
List Entry Number: 1319107
Date first listed: 23-Dec-1983
Statutory Address: Station Road, Wargrave
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Statutory Address: Station Road, Wargrave
The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.
District: Wokingham (Unitary Authority)
National Grid Reference: SU 78385 78412
First World War memorial, 1922, by Sir Edwin Lutyens with later additions for the Second World War.
Reasons for Designation
Wargrave 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 conflicts of the C20; * 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 memorial, unusual amongst Lutyens’ War Crosses for its hexagonal profile.
The commissioning of Lutyens as designer of Wargrave’s village war memorial presumably came through the Hannen family. Nicholas ‘Beau’ Hannen worked in Lutyens’ office from 1902-5, and in 1905 Lutyens designed a family columbarium (listed Grade II*) which stands in the churchyard at Wargrave. A public meeting to discuss a memorial was held on 13 October 1919, and it was agreed Lutyens should be asked to be the designer. £500 was rapidly raised and, on a site visit, land on the village green donated by Henry Bond was agreed to be an appropriate location. Wargrave’s war memorial was dedicated on 28 May 1922 by the Bishop of Oxford.
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 at the south end of the village green. It comprises a Portland stone War Cross set on an unusually high hexagonal plinth, which reflects the cross section of the shaft. It is set on a stage-like set of four steps, the top three shallow, the lowest deeper and with a single block-step to the front. Inscribed on the plinth is:
Front (south): WARGRAVE/ MCMXIV MCMXIX/ MCMXXXIX MXMXLV
Back (north): HER GLORIOUS DEAD/ MCMXIV MCMXIX/ MCMXXXIX MXMXLV
The names of the fallen are inscribed around the base of the cross. Two later stone tablets set into the ground at the front of the base rehearse the (worn) names on the memorial, with additions.
This list entry was subject to a Minor Amendment on 26/10/2015
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, 10 January 2017.
The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.
Legacy System number: 41367
Legacy System: LBS
Books and journals
Skelton, T, Gliddon, G, Lutyens and the Great War, (2008), 83-4, 177
War Memorials Online, accessed 10 January 2017 from https://www.warmemorialsonline.org.uk/memorial/115482
War Memorials Register, accessed 10 January 2017 from http://www.iwm.org.uk/memorials/item/memorial/7831
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