St Peter's Church War Memorial, Cheltenham


Heritage Category:
Listed Building
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Statutory Address:
St Peter's Church War Memorial, St Peter's Churchyard, Tewkesbury Road, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, GL51 9AH


Ordnance survey map of St Peter's Church War Memorial, Cheltenham
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Statutory Address:
St Peter's Church War Memorial, St Peter's Churchyard, Tewkesbury Road, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, GL51 9AH

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

Cheltenham (District Authority)
Non Civil Parish
National Grid Reference:


A First World War memorial, erected in 1920.

Reasons for Designation

St Peter’s Church 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 the local community, and the sacrifice it made in the First World War. Architectural interest: * for its design and construction by a renowned architect and company.

Group value: * with the Grade II*-listed Church of St Peter.


The aftermath of the First World War saw the biggest single wave of public commemoration ever with tens of thousands of memorials erected across England. This was the result of both the huge impact on communities of the loss of three quarters of a million British lives, and also 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 the Church of St Peter, Cheltenham, as a permanent testament to the sacrifice made by the members of the local community who lost their lives in the First World War.

After the end of the First World War, money was raised within the Parish of St Peter, Cheltenham, for a war memorial to be erected outside of the Church of St Peter. Fundraising included parades, sporting competitions and a flower show, all of which contributed to the £250 cost of the memorial. One thousand men from the Parish’s population of around 4,300 went to fight, of which 134 did not return.

The memorial was designed by the Cheltenham-based architect Leonard William Barnard FRIBA (1870-1951). It is sometimes attributed to Prothero, Phillott & Barnard, of which practice Barnard joined in 1893 and took over in 1919, running it as LW Barnard & Partners. He designed the War Memorial at Christ Church, Prestatyn, Wales (Grade II-listed).

The St Peter’s War Memorial was made by HH Martyn & Co, a company founded in 1888 with a reputation for excellence in the carving of wood, stone and plaster and who, from 1915 also built aircraft under sub-contract from the Aircraft Manufacturing Co (Airco).

The war memorial was unveiled on Sunday October 10 1920 by Lt Col AW Pagan, DSO, with a dedication by the Archdeacon of Cheltenham, the Venerable George Gardner.

The memorial was restored in 1998, and further conservation work undertaken in 2018, both projects funded in part by the War Memorials Trust.


A First World War memorial, erected in 1920.

MATERIALS: Cotswold limestone, bronze.

DESCRIPTION: St Peter’s War Memorial stands outside to the north-east of the Church of St Peter (SW Daukes, 1847-1848, Grade II*-listed), adjacent to Tewkesbury Road on the north-west side of Cheltenham town centre.

The memorial takes the form of an octagonal shaft with gablets and small pedestals at its base on intermediate elevations, rising to a plain cross. It stands on a tall octagonal base with a sunken panel on each side, standing on a two-step plinth with a gravel surround. A plinth supports the base on a chamfered moulding, and the base for the shaft and cross has ogee and ovolo mouldings. A bronze wreath is set above a narrow cornice below the cross head on the east side. On the east side, at the base of the shaft is the inscription LEST WE / FORGET / 1914-1919 and at the bottom of the base runs the inscription GREATER LOVE / HATH NO MAN / THAN THIS. The names of the 134 men from the Parish who did not return are carved in the sunken panels on each face of the base.


Books and journals
Verey, D, Brooks, A, The Buildings of England: Gloucestershire 2 The Vale and the Forest of Dean, (2002), 237
Diocese of Gloucester ‘St Peter’s war memorial set to return to former glory’, accessed 9 April 2018 from
Gloucestershire Archives - Documentation concerning war memorials held at Gloucestershire Archives post-WW1, accessed 9 April 2018 from
Grace’s Guide – H.H. Martyn, accessed 9 April 2018 from
Imperial War Museum War Memorials Register – St Peter’s Cheltenham, accessed 9 April 2018 from
Stained Glass in Wales – Leonard William Barnard, accessed 9 April 2018 from
War Memorials and Rolls of Honour in the Cheltenham Area – War Memorial, St Peter’s Church Cheltenham (including scan of opening ceremony programme), accessed 9 April 2018 from
War Memorials Online – St Peter’s Church, accessed 9 April 2018 from
War Memorials Trust – Showcase Result – Cheltenham St Peter’s (grant funding), accessed 9 April 2018 from
Cheltenham Chronicle Saturday October 16 1920 p.6 ‘St Peter’s War Memorial: A Memorable Ceremony’
Odgers Conservation ‘War Memorial, St Peter’s Church, Tewkesbury Road, Cheltenham: Condition Survey and Conservation Assessment’ August 2016
Ordnance Survey, Gloucestershire, 3rd edition, (1923) (1:2500)


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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