A First World War memorial of 1921 with alterations after the Second World War, by Darcy Braddell, comprising a Portland stone obelisk and bronze lantern, guarded by four stylised stone lions.
Reasons for Designation
The Brunner Mond and ICI Alkali Division War Memorial, of 1921 with alterations after the Second World War, by Darcy Braddell, is listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons:
* Historic interest: as an eloquent witness to the tragic impact of world events on the local community, and the sacrifice it made in the conflicts of the C20;
* Design quality: a noble design of an obelisk (sympathetically enlarged after the Second World War) with a bronze lantern and highly contemporary stylised stone lions;
* Architect: designed by the architect Darcy Braddell, a fellow-pupil with Sir Edwin Lutyens and designer of several other listed buildings, and other war memorials;
* Historic association: with the Silvertown War Memorial (Grade II), also by the same architect and commemorating the staff of the Silvertown works whose names also appear on this memorial.
Following the First World War, Brunner-Mond and Co commissioned Darcy Braddell to design memorials for each of their works and offices. The memorials at Lostock, Sandbach, Middlewich, Silvertown and the various offices only had the names of those who worked at those sites on them. However, the memorial at their Winnington Works was inscribed with the names of all the Brunner-Mond workers who died during the war. The memorial at Winnington was unveiled on 11 June 1921 by by Lieut-General Sir Belvoir de Lisle, with Roscoe Brunner and Sir Alfred Mond (Minister of Health) also speaking.
A photo taken c1921 shows the memorial in its original design but it is not clear if it is in the present location. According to the 1:1,250 OS map of 1965 the war memorial was situated about 20m from the SW corner of Mond House. However, it is not shown in this position on the OS map of 1975 and is shown in its current position by 1982. In order to accommodate the names of the Fallen of the Second World War the inscription was altered; it originally read, 'To the/ glorious memory/ of the men/ employed by/ Brunner Mond/ and Co. Ltd/ who fell during/ the Great War/ August 1914/ June 1919' and the names of those from Winnington commenced beneath. Due to the extended inscription, the Winnington names were removed from the front face and a bronze wreath (removed from one of the side faces) added below the main inscription. The names from the Second World War were added to the rear face and the First World War names entirely accommodated on the two side faces. Possibly at the same time an additional stage was added between the base stone and the stone with the lower wreath. Jet-washing of the soft stone has worn some of the inscriptions to near illegibility.
Brunner, Mond and Co was founded as a private partnership in 1873 and became a public company in 1881. The company made soda ash for the cotton industry, by the new ammonia soda process. During the First World War the firm manufactured half the high explosives used on every front, at lower profit than offered by the Government. 2,688 of their employees served in the War, and 291 perished. This included sixteen men and two women who were killed in a huge TNT explosion at the Silvertown works in London, who are also commemorated on the Silvertown memorial. In 1926 Brunner Mond merged with three other British chemical companies to form Imperial Chemical Industries, an organisation that grew to become one of the world's largest and most successful companies. The Brunner Mond name lives on as a subsidiary of Tata Chemicals Ltd.
Thomas Arthur Darcy Braddell (1884-1970) was articled to Sir Ernest George, who also tutored Sir Edwin Lutyens. He had an extensive Arts and Crafts domestic practice in partnership with Humphry Deane as Deane & Braddell. He was admitted ARIBA in 1920 under the war exemption scheme, and elected Fellow in 1922. He wrote 'How to Look at Buildings' in 1932. He also designed the Grade-II listed Mond family mausoleum in St Pancras and Islington Cemetery.
First World War memorial of 1921 with alterations after the Second World War, by Darcy Braddell.
MATERIALS: Portland stone and bronze.
PLAN: a square central obelisk on a four-stepped base.
DESCRIPTION: standing opposite Winnington Hall (Grade I and restored by the same architect) at the entrance to the Winnington Works. The tapered obelisk has a moulded stepped capstone surmounted by a bronze and glass eternal flame with a rams’-heads and lions’-feet pedestal. Four heavily-stylised couchant lion sculptures occupy the diagonals of the base. The main inscription reads:
IN MEMORY OF/ THE MEN OF/ BRUNNER MOND/ & CO LIMITED/ WHO FELL IN THE/ FIRST WORLD WAR/ 1914-1919/ AND IN MEMORY OF/ THE MEN OF THE/ ALKALI DIVISION OF/ IMPERIAL CHEMICAL/ INDUSTRIES LIMITED/ WHO FELL IN THE/ SECOND WORLD WAR/ 1939-1945
The names of the Fallen from the First World War (believed to number 291) are arranged on the side faces by place of work, by unit and alphabetically, with no ranks given. The Second World War names are on the rear (N) face, arranged in the same way, with some later additions beneath. Due to the softness of the stone the carving is very worn in places.
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, 23 November 2017.