Help Look After War Memorials

Now that the last veterans of the 1914-18 conflict have died, it's up to our generation to keep the memories fresh. To protect war memorials for the future Historic England has joined up with Civic Voice, Imperial War Museums (IWM) and War Memorials Trust.

Together we're working with the public on a programme of memorial recording, conservation and listing. 

How to get involved

Apply for funding to conserve a memorial

Many war memorials are now over 100 years old. They may need some extra care to fight the effects of ageing, weathering or even deliberate damage.

You can apply for a grant to conserve and protect your local war memorial. These grants are administered by War Memorials Trust.

Visit their website to apply for a grant or contact War Memorials Trust directly to enquire about funding: [email protected] or 020 7233 7356.

Protect a war memorial by getting it listed

Only a tiny fraction of our war memorials are currently listed. Historic England is aiming to list 2,500 more over the First World War centenary period 2014-18.

If your war memorial is already listed, it will appear on the National Heritage List for England. If it isn't, and you think it should be protected by listing, you can apply to list your war memorial.

Attend a workshop on how to care for your local memorial

Civic Voice is running workshops to help communities protect and get involved in the care of their local memorials. Why not attend a war memorial workshop to find out more? You can also sign up to their War Memorial News for regular updates.

Research and record a memorial

The first thing to do is to check that a good public record of your memorial exists.

  • The IWM War Memorials Register is the national repository for historic information about our war memorials and is a good place to start your research. You can send any new information that you uncover in your research to [email protected] to help improve the register.
  • You can also provide up-to-date information on the condition of war memorials on War Memorials Online. War Memorials Trust can use this information to encourage conservation and repair work to war memorials
  • You can report a concern about the condition of a war memorial on War Memorials Online.
  • For urgent concerns about a memorial's condition email [email protected] or call 020 7233 7356

Download an education pack

Teachers and educators, why not survey the condition of a local memorial with your students to show them how they can get involved? You can also download a range of teaching resources from War Memorials Trust.

A student laying a wreath at a commemorative ceremony at Fishponds war memorial
Year 6 students from Fishponds Church of England Academy were helped to carry out a condition survey of Fishponds War Memorial and write an application to Historic England that resulted in the memorial's protection by listing. © Historic England

Get specialist advice on how to conserve a memorial

Historic England works with War Memorials Trust to improve war memorial conservation skills amongst professionals. If you're a heritage professional working with war memorials and landscapes, please refer to Historic England's practical advice on how to protect, conserve and maintain memorials. Advice is also available from War Memorials Trust

First World War Memorials Programme

The First World War Memorials Programme is a centenary project funded by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport. This programme sees Historic England working in partnership with Civic Voice, IWM and War Memorials Trust. Together with the public we are undertaking a programme of recording, research, conservation and listing that ensures war memorials across Britain are protected and the people they commemorate are remembered.

Sharing the stories of the First World War Memorials Programme

There will be a series of free events across England to hear from volunteers and others about how communities have been commemorating the First World War. You will also have the chance to hear speakers from Civic Voice, Historic England, Imperial War Museums and War Memorials Trust. We hope you will be inspired to go back to your own community to identify and record the condition of your own memorials as the nation remembers the fallen 100 years on.
The centenary is a chance to understand more about the First World War, uncover its stories and explore what it means to us today and a series of events will be organised so we can “hear the stories” and review the past few years to see “how communities have remembered the fallen”.

Attend a free event near to you in:

If you have yet to engage in the commemoration, please do attend these events as it will be your chance to see how others, in the final year of the centenary are remembering the former members of their community.
After the event, you too can make a difference by making sure your local war memorial is protected for future generations by getting it listed and added to War Memorials Online.

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