Kidlington and Hamlets War Memorial


Heritage Category:
Listed Building
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Statutory Address:
Churchyard of the Church St Mary the Virgin, Kidlington, Cherwell, Oxfordshire, OX5 2BA


Ordnance survey map of Kidlington and Hamlets War Memorial
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Statutory Address:
Churchyard of the Church St Mary the Virgin, Kidlington, Cherwell, Oxfordshire, OX5 2BA

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

Cherwell (District Authority)
National Grid Reference:


First World War memorial, unveiled on 27 June 1920, with further names added after the Second World War and later conflicts.

Reasons for Designation

Kidlington and Hamlets War Memorial is listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons: * Historic interest: as an eloquent witness to the tragic impact of world events on this community, and the sacrifices it has made in the conflicts of the C20; * Architectural interest: an ornate and striking cross with carved Celtic-style knot work; * Group value: with the Church of St Mary the Virgin (Grade I), Old Priest’s House (Grade II) and several chest tombs in the churchyard (Grade II).


The aftermath of the First World War saw the biggest single wave of public commemoration ever with tens of thousands of memorials erected across the country, both as a result of the huge impact the loss of three quarters of a million British lives had on communities and the official policy of not repatriating the dead, which meant that the memorials provided the main focus of the grief felt at this great loss.

One such memorial was raised at Kidlington as a permanent testament to the sacrifice made by the members of the local community who lost their lives in the First World War.

The memorial was funded by local donations which were collected door-to-door with a total of £130 10 1 being raised. The memorial was designed and built by a local building firm Knowles and Sons, who also built the Bampton Cross in West Oxfordshire.

The Kidlington memorial was unveiled on 27 June 1920 by Mrs Charles Timms in recognition of her grievous loss of three sons in a four-month period of the war. The Kidlington vicar C R Freeborn took the dedication service.

After the Second World War 21 names were added onto the memorial. The words ‘Great War’ inscribed on the memorial were changed to ‘Wars’ and the dates 1914-18 and 1939-45 were added. Further names were added after the 1955 Malayan Crisis and the 1982 Falklands War.


MATERIALS: limestone.

DESCRIPTION: the memorial comprises a wheel-head cross decorated with Celtic-style knot work carved in shallow relief surmounting a tapering shaft.

The shaft is set upon a square tapering plinth with dedications in lead lettering on the south face reading: TO/ THE GLORY OF GOD/ AND/ THE IMMORTAL MEMORY/ OF THE MEN OF/ KIDLINGTON/ AND ITS HAMLETS/ WHO NOBLY FOUGHT AND FELL/ IN THE GREAT WARS/ 1914 – 18 and 1939 – 45. Below carved in relief are the words: LEST WE FORGET.

The east and west sides of the plinth carry 40 names.

Twenty-one names from the Second World War, one name from the Malayan crisis and one from the Falklands war are incised onto the northern side of the plinth.

The plinth is set upon a three-stepped square base.


War Memorials Online, accessed 11 January 2017 from
War Memorials Register, accessed 5 June 2016 from
‘Minutes of War Memorial Committee Meeting’, Kidlington Parish Records (1920)


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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