Fretherne War Memorial


Heritage Category:
Listed Building
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Statutory Address:
Fretherne War Memorial, outside the Church of St Mary, Fretherne, Gloucestershire, GL2 7JF


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Statutory Address:
Fretherne War Memorial, outside the Church of St Mary, Fretherne, Gloucestershire, GL2 7JF

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

Stroud (District Authority)
Fretherne with Saul
National Grid Reference:


A First World War memorial, erected in about 1920; altered by the addition of two further names after the Second World War.

Reasons for Designation

Fretherne War Memorial, which stands outside the Church of St Mary, 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 church’s community, and the sacrifice it made in the conflicts of the C20.

Architectural interest:

* for its design, a well-executed stone cross with carved detailing and good inscriptions.

Group value:

* with the Grade-II* listed Church of St Mary, outside whose churchyard it stands.


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 750,000 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 Fretherne as a permanent testament to the sacrifice made by six members of the local community who lost their lives in the First World War.

Fretherne War Memorial dates from 1920. It commemorates six local men who died in the First World War and also makes reference to a further 25 local men who served in the conflict. Following the Second World War, the names of two fallen from that conflict were added to the memorial.


A First World War memorial, erected in about 1920; altered by the addition of two further names after the Second World War.


DESCRIPTION: the memorial, about 4m high, takes the form of a Latin cross surmounted on a collared shaft which rises from a square plinth. This is set on a three-stepped base, the bottom step of which is deep and has a low step abutting its north side. The cross shaft has carved flowers running up the chamfered edges.

The north face of the plinth lists the names of the six men of the parish who died during the First World War. The east face bears the inscription (CROSS)/ TO THE GLORY OF GOD AND IN EVER/ GRATEFUL MEMORY OF THE MEN OF/ FRETHERNE/ WHO GAVE THEIR LIVES FOR/ KING & COUNTRY/ IN THE GREAT WAR A.D. 1914-1919/ (CROSS). The south face reads (CROSS)/ 25 MEN OF FRETHERNE SERVED IN/ THE GREAT WAR/ (CROSS), while the west face reads (CROSS)/ GREATER LOVE HATH NO MAN/ THAN THIS THAT A MAN LAY DOWN/ HIS LIFE FOR HIS FRIENDS ST JOHN XV 13. One name of each of the two men who fell in the Second World War is incised into the north and east faces of the top step of the base.


Books and journals
Verey, D, Brooks, A, The Buildings of England Gloucestershire II: The Vale and the Forest of Dean , (2002), 385
Imperial War Museum War Memorials Register: Fretherne War Memorial, accessed 13.12.2018 from
War Memorials Online Database, Fretherne War Memorial WMO201001 , accessed 13.12.2018 from
'Gloucestershire War Memorials', Gloucester Journal, (13 September 1924), p.19


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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