South Merstham War Memorial

Overview

Heritage Category: Listed Building

Grade: II

List Entry Number: 1458564

Date first listed: 22-Aug-2018

Statutory Address: War memorial, All Saints' Church, Battlebridge Lane, Merstham, Surrey, RH1 3HA

Map

Ordnance survey map of South Merstham War Memorial
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Location

Statutory Address: War memorial, All Saints' Church, Battlebridge Lane, Merstham, Surrey, RH1 3HA

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

County: Surrey

District: Reigate and Banstead (District Authority)

Parish: Non Civil Parish

National Grid Reference: TQ2917852447

Summary

First World War memorial, dedicated on 1 November 1920, with later additions for the Second World War.

Reasons for Designation

South Merstham War Memorial, believed executed by G Maile and Sons and dedicated on 1 November 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;

* as a symbol of hope and resistance as survivor of a bomb which destroyed the church and vicarage in 1941.

Architectural interest:

* as a simple, elegant, memorial which is stylistically redolent of its inter-war date.

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. 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 South Merstham 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 is believed that the memorial was executed by G Maile and Sons, stone masons. It was dedicated on All Saints Day, 1 November 1920, by the Right Revd Bishop Hook and unveiled by Brigadier-General George K Cockerill, CB, MP, with the Merstham branch of the Comrades of the Great War taking a leading part in the ceremony.

The Church of All Saints was built in 1951 by E F Starling to replace its predecessor of 1897-1898. The church and its vicarage were destroyed by a bomb that fell on 19 April 1941, giving added significance to the war memorial, which survived, as a symbol of hope and resistance.

Details

First World War memorial, it is believed executed by G Maile and Sons stone masons, and unveiled on 1 November 1920, with later additions for the Second World War.

MATERIALS: Cornish granite

DESCRIPTION: the memorial stands adjacent to the south-east corner of the Church of All Saints of 1951 by E F Starling. It is just over 3m (ten feet) tall and has a tall tapering shaft surmounted by a wheel cross, with the face of the shaft and arms of the cross enriched with an intertwined flowing circular motif. The shaft is mounted on a battered, stepped base in two sections, standing on a shallow, square, granite plinth. It stands in a small polygonal enclosure, created after the Second World War, which is laid in crazy paving and bounded by a low granite kerb with short, square section upstands at the corners and at the midpoints.

The base is inscribed TO THE / GLORIOUS MEMORY OF / THE SOUTH MERSTHAM MEN / WHO FELL IN / THE GREAT WARS / 1914-1919 / 1939-1945 //

GRANT THEM LORD ETERNAL REST / AND LET LIGHT PERPETUAL SHINE UPON THEM

Sources

Other
London Metropolitan Archive Surrey Diocese Faculty DS FO 119 91
The Surrey Mirror, 4 November 1921

End of official listing