Preston Colliery War Memorial


Heritage Category:
Listed Building
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Statutory Address:
Preston Cemetery, Walton Avenue, North Shields, North Tyneside


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Statutory Address:
Preston Cemetery, Walton Avenue, North Shields, North Tyneside

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

North Tyneside (Metropolitan Authority)
Non Civil Parish
National Grid Reference:


First World War memorial, 1924 to the designs of Messrs. Cackett and Burns Dick of Newcastle and sculpted by D.W. Foster.

Reasons for Designation

Preston Colliery war memorial is designated at Grade II, for the following principal reasons: * Historic interest: it is a poignant reminder of the impact of tragic world events upon an individual community and, thus has strong cultural and historical significance within both a local and national context; * Design: by the noted regional architectural firm Cackett & Burns Dick, this war memorial is attractive and well-detailed.


At the start of the First World War 900 men were employed at Preston Colliery, and of these 392 joined the war effort, with 65 losing their lives. This war memorial was commissioned by the colliery owners, G.A. Ritson and Sons, and was designed by Messrs. Cackett and Burns Dick of Newcastle. The sculptor was Mr D.W. Foster, whose monumental workshop was nearby. A curving wall to the rear of the obelisk with wooden seats was erected by Messrs. Lant of Newcastle. The memorial was unveiled on Sunday 15th June 1924 by Mr U.A. Ritson, Colliery Chairman, and was dedicated by Rev. R.E. Holmes. The memorial was originally sited at the junction of Queen Alexandra Road and Billy Mill Lane, but was moved to its present location in Preston Cemetery in 1964 due to road development; the curving wall to the rear with wooden seats was not re-erected on the new site.


MATERIALS: silver-grey granite, bronze detail and lettering.

DESCRIPTION: the memorial is in the form of a tall, slender, gently tapering, octagonal obelisk resting on an octagonal pedestal, which in turn rests on a three-stepped octagonal base. Towards the top of the obelisk the diagonal faces contain projecting blocks to create an armless cross. Eight carved bosses decorate the top of the pedestal and there is a bronze sword of sacrifice fixed to the face of the obelisk.

The first panel of the pedestal bears the inscription in lead lettering: TO OUR GLORIOUS DEAD / 1914-18 / PRESTON COLLIERY

And beneath on the top step of the base: ERECTED BY/J A RITSON & SON

The names of the 65 Fallen are recorded on panels two to six of the pedestal.

This List entry has been amended to add the source for War Memorials Online. This source was not used in the compilation of this List entry but is added here as a guide for further reading, 8 February 2017.


Cross 1914-18, Preston Colliery Cemetery, accessed from
War Memorials Online, accessed 8 February 2017 from
War Memorials Register, accessed 8 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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