Fleet War Memorial

Overview

Heritage Category: Listed Building

Grade: II

List Entry Number: 1457019

Date first listed: 24-Jul-2018

Statutory Address: Gurkha Square, Fleet, Hampshire, GU51 5BX

Map

Ordnance survey map of Fleet War Memorial
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Location

Statutory Address: Gurkha Square, Fleet, Hampshire, GU51 5BX

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

County: Hampshire

District: Hart (District Authority)

Parish: Fleet

National Grid Reference: SU8063453970

Summary

A stone war memorial of 1920, with names added after the Second World War and later in the C20.

Reasons for Designation

Fleet War Memorial, of 1920, 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 local community, and the sacrifice it has made in the conflicts of the C20.   Architectural interest:   *    an impressive monument, constructed from good materials, and centred on a stripped-back Celtic cross.

History

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. One such memorial was raised at Fleet, as a permanent testament to the sacrifice made by the members of the local community, who lost their lives in the First World War. It was built by S Mardles and Sons, and was unveiled in 1920. After the Second World War further inscriptions were added, to commemorate the combatants who lost their lives in this conflict. Later in the C20, the memorial was relocated from a position behind the station hotel, to its current location. The name of Royal Marine A Gilbert has also been added.

The memorial is located in Gurkha Square, which is so named, to commemorate the long association of the town, with the Gurkha Regiment. On 5 August 2000, the 1st Battalion of the Gurkha Rifles, marched down Fleet Road to say goodbye to the community. The Gurkhas originate from Nepal, and during the First World War, over 120,000 joined the British Army, fighting mainly in Flanders.

Details

A stone war memorial of 1920, with names added after the Second World War and later in the C20.

MATERIALS: Portland stone.   DESCRIPTION: the Fleet War Memorial is located in Gurkha Square, and faces south-east on to a car park. It is formed of a curved stone wall, which extends either side of a sturdy stone cross. The wall is constructed of rough-hewn, squared-stone blocks, and rises in the centre. It has rough-hewn coping, and a low stone bench at either end. The face of the wall carries four stone tablets which are inscribed with the names of the fallen.

The cross surmounts a broad, tapering shaft, and is styled in a geometric Celtic idiom. It is supported by a battered, and stepped plinth, which is faced by a fifth tablet. This is carved in plain-relief with the words ‘OUR GLORIOUS DEAD / 1914 - 1918 AND 1939 – 1945’, and below there are further inscribed names of the fallen.  At the bottom of tablet there is a secondary inscription ‘AND IN MEMORY OF THOSE WHO LOST THEIR LIVES IN WARS AND CONFLICTS SINCE. In all, 155 combatants are commemorated (2018).

Sources

Websites
Gurkha website, accessed 9/5/18 from http://www.fleethants.com/allhistory/gurkhas/main1.htm
Imperial War Museum website, accessed 9/5/18 from https://www.iwm.org.uk/memorials/item/memorial/21240

End of official listing