War Memorial at St Michael's Church

Overview

Heritage Category:
Listed Building
Grade:
II
List Entry Number:
1474814
Date first listed:
21-Apr-2021
Statutory Address:
Churchyard of the Church of St Michael, Windhill, Bishop's Stortford, Hertfordshire

Map

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Location

Statutory Address:
Churchyard of the Church of St Michael, Windhill, Bishop's Stortford, Hertfordshire

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

County:
Hertfordshire
District:
East Hertfordshire (District Authority)
Parish:
Bishop's Stortford
National Grid Reference:
TL4862421356

Summary

War memorial incorporating a C15 lantern cross, unveiled in 1920, dedicated to the fallen of the First World War.

Reasons for Designation

The war memorial at the Church of St Michael, incorporating a C15 lantern cross, unveiled in 1920, and dedicated to the fallen of the First World War, 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 sacrifices it made in the conflicts of the C20; * for the historic interest of the C15 lantern cross, and its history within the parish church and community.

Architectural interest:

* as a richly-carved and well-executed memorial; * for the integration of a C15 lantern cross into the design, which enhances the architectural interest of the sculpture.

Group value:

* for the strong group value the war memorial holds with nearby listed buildings, including the Church of St Michael (Grade I), and the Boar’s Head Inn (Grade II*).

History

The aftermath of the First World War that was the great age of memorial building, 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 in the churchyard of the Church of St Michael in Bishop’s Stortford as a permanent testament to the sacrifices made by the members of the local community who lost their lives in the First World War. The lantern cross dates from the C15, and previously stood south of the church. It was removed around 1643 and stored in a number of places including under the church floor and in the belfry, until it was repurposed as a war memorial in the early C20 and re-erected north of the church, adjacent the approach from High Street. The memorial was paid for by public subscription and was unveiled on 23 June 1920.

Details

War memorial incorporating a C15 lantern cross, unveiled in 1920, dedicated to the fallen of the First World War.

MATERIALS: the memorial is crafted from limestone.

DESCRIPTION: it takes the form of an ornately-carved lantern cross on a square-plan shaft and plinth, and two-tier octagonal-plan base. The lantern has Gothic ornament including crocketed pinnacles and blind cinquefoil arcades; the west elevation of the lantern features a scene of the crucifixion, with Christ flanked by the Blessed Virgin and St John. The shaft and plinth are chamfered, and the west elevation of the plinth is inscribed: ‘IN GRATEFUL MEMORY OF MEN OF/ THIS PARISH AND CONGREGATION/ WHO DIED FOR THEIR COUNTRY IN/ THE GREAT WAR 1914 – 1919/ RIP/ LET THOSE WHO COME AFTER SEE TO IT THAT/ THEIR NAMES ARE NOT FORGOTTEN.’

The memorial stands within the churchyard of the Church of St Michael (Grade I).

Legal

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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