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War Memorials News

How will we remember them?                                 3rd April 2018

Airmen memorials given protected status to mark RAF centenary
Bootle War Memorial dedicated to airmen from the First and Second World War has been given heritage protection to mark 100 years of the Royal Air Force.

Memorials dedicated to airmen in the First and Second World Wars have been given heritage protection to mark the centenary of the Royal Air Force. Some 14 war memorials, including one to the most decorated British pilot of the First World War and one to the first pilot to shoot down a German zeppelin airship, have been newly listed or had their protected status upgraded.

Unusual aviation monuments with new listings include a memorial with a central figure of Zeus, god of thunder; a Calvary Cross with a figure of Christ crucified, and a memorial in the shape of an aircraft.

The new and upgraded listings by Department for Digitial, Culture, Media and Sport on the advice of Historic England marks a century since the formation of the RAF, the world’s first air force independent of army or navy control.

The RAF was formed on April 1, 1918, following a merger of the Royal Flying Corps and the Royal Naval Air Service, which each had around 100 aircraft, balloons and airships at the beginning of the First World War in 1914.

By the end of the four-year conflict, the first in which aviation played a major role, the RAF had 27,000 officers and 260,000 other personnel operating more than 22,000 aircraft, but had seen high casualty rates.

Find out how you can add a war memorial to the National Heritage List for England

Battle's Over - take part in the national tribute to mark the centenary of the end of the First World War
On 11th November 2018, the United Kingdom and its friends overseas will mark the day 100 years ago when the  guns fell silent at the end of the First World War. You can play your part in remembering the  sacrifice of millions of men and women by taking part in Battle’s Over, a unique series of events in the morning and evening involving organisations and communities the length and breadth of our nation and in many countries abroad.

At 6.00am, the sound of 1000 bagpipes will fill the air before dawn has broken on 11th November 2018. In cities and towns throughout the country individual pipers will play Battle’s O’er - a traditional air played by pipers after a battle, heralding the start of the day’s commemorations.

At 6.55pm the Last Post will be played at many of the 1,000 WWI Beacon sites throughout the United Kingdom, involving young people and others paying their personal tribute to those who gave their lives during the First World War.  This will be followed at 7.00pm by the lighting of over 1000 beacons across the UK in remembrance of the end of the war.  At 7.05 'Ringing out for Peace' will begin.  As beacons blaze around the country, bells in 1,000 churches and cathedrals will ring out in celebration of the end of the First World War.

We encourage you therefore to join the many thousands of people already taking part, by participating in this unique community project, commemorating the bravery and personal sacrifice made by so many, along with celebrating the light that emerged from the darkness of war. 

Find out more about how your community can take part in Battle's Over here.
Public search facility for one million names on war memorials now available

The Imperial War Museum is delighted to announce the search facility enabling the public to search for over 1 million names on war memorials is now live. The War Memorials Register is the national register of UK war memorials and the names of the individuals they commemorate. It currently holds records for over 70,000 memorials in the UK, Channel Islands and Isle of Man.

The register now displays the names of individuals commemorated on war memorials and  anyone can search the database, which now includes over 1 million names on war memorials recorded by surname, location etc. You can search here for your relatives or anyone you might be doing a research project on.

Join this important project by volunteering your time and help the IWM to improve the Register so that future generations can continue to value and remember the people, places and events memorials commemorate.

Contact IWM for more information on how you can make a difference and volunteer at

Building a greater understanding of war memorial heritage with the next generation

Did you know that War Memorials Trust has a youth focused Learning Programme to educate young people in schools and youth groups about their war memorial heritage. The programme aims to ensure that the future custodians of the UK’s war memorials have the knowledge and skills necessary to help them take an active part in memorial conservation.

To support this programme and to ensure resources reach a wider audience, War Memorial Trust has created a website,, which contains further information about the programme and learning materials for primary and secondary schools as well as youth groups.

By discovering the history of their local war memorial, and the personal stories of those commemorated,  the programme is hoping young people in schools and youth groups will be inspired to continue the important work of preserving our war memorial heritage as tomorrow’s custodians. 

Throughout the website, you can find more information about the Learning Programme; what it does, what it aims to achieve, how it has developed, and who is involved.

If you are looking at working with a younger audience to help commemorate the First World War, you need to visit to give you the guidance you need.  We have also put  together the following training events that we hope will help you.

Led by the Learning Officer at War Memorials Trust, the workshops will help you discover:

  • The best ways to approach a school/youth group
  • Ways of linking activities to the curriculum
  • Different types of learning activities that can be carried out with school or youth groups
  • Resources available online
  • Community stories and top tips from volunteers who have worked with schools
Come to a "Sharing Success" event and learn how others are Remembering the Fallen!
Delegates at a recent FWWMP event in Stockport

Delegates from the Northwest and the Midlands have come together at two recent events to hear from volunteers about their experiences of being involved in the First World War Memorials Programme over the last couple of years, as well as those who have plans to run commemorative events in their communities in the future.

More of the 'Sharing the stories of the First World War Memorials Programme' events are planned for the coming months.  It's your chance to discover more about the programme and its achievements to date and hear directly from individuals and community groups who have been contributing to different areas of the programme.

During the event, you will also have the chance to hear from Imperial War Museums about the latest developments with the War Memorials Register, from Historic England about listing war memorials and Enriching the List, and from War Memorials Trust about conserving war memorials. If you want to learn how communities in your area are commemorating the fallen, please sign up to a future event below:

If you want to contribute ideas about how we can keep volunteers actively involved in the historic environment, please do share them with Civic Voice at

Shirley war memorial set to be conserved thanks to grant
Copyright Mike Faherty

Shirley war memorial, in the West Midlands, will be conserved ahead of the centenary of Armistice Day thanks to a grant of £4,020.  The funding has been awarded from the Grants for War Memorials scheme supported by Historic England and the Wolfson Foundation, administered through War Memorials Trust.

The money will enable the memorial to be cleaned by specialist contractors, some areas of damage to be repaired and the re-cutting of some of the names which are gradually becoming illegible.

Those leading the project are representatives of St James Church, Shirley Royal British Legion and Shirley Lions together with Councillor Brian Holmes.

Organisers believe the expected cost is around £6,500 for the upcoming works and they are hoping to raise an additional £5,000 to top up funds needed for this set of work and to go towards future maintenance of the memorial.  Shirley Lions have announced it will set the ball rolling with a donation of £1,000.

The memorial, which stands in the grounds of St James’ Church, has been the focal point of the annual Remembrance Day service since 1921 when it was unveiled.

Frances Moreton, director at War Memorials Trust said: “War memorials are a tangible connection to our shared past creating a link between the fallen and today. It is vital we ensure all our war memorials are in the best possible condition for their age and the charity is delighted to support this project.

“The Centenary of World War One is a wonderful opportunity for local communities across the country to protect and conserve their war memorials.”

Discover more about your local war memorial by undertaking a condition survey

        Programme volunteers surveying Leamington Spa war memorial

The First World War Memorials Programme is encouraging people to look more closely at their local war memorials and to take action to ensure they are fitting tributes to those who fought in the First World War or other conflicts. This tool kit is aimed at helping anyone who wants to assess and record the condition of a war memorial. Your survey will help to

  • Identify whether the memorial is in good condition or whether it needs any repairs/conservation
  • Create a record that can be held locally, on the War Memorials Register and the War Memorials Online website.
  • Kickstart any action that’s needed to ensure the future of your local memorial.

The tool kit includes three short videos and several help sheets to tell you more about the programme and how to carry out your survey(s). To get started, click here.

Grants Showcase - Much Dewchurch War Memorial

Town or City: Much Dewchurch
County: Herefordshire
Country: England
WMT Reference Number: WM10544

Value of grant: £1610.00
Type of memorial: Freestanding
Type of work: Conservation and repair
Grant scheme: WMT Grant Scheme
Year: 2017


Much Dewchurch war memorial is located on the B4348 road, Much Dewchurch, Herefordshire. This memorial is in the form of a granite cross on a square base on a three stepped plinth. The inscription in raised lead lettering painted black commemorates those who died in World War I and II.

In 2017 a grant of £1,610 was awarded through War Memorials Trust Grants Scheme towards gentle cleaning to improve the legibility of the inscription and painting the lead letters black to match existing and lime mortar pointing of joints. The lead letters were also protected with SmartWater as one of the conditions of the grant.

The memorial was constructed after WWI.

Further information

War Memorials Trust reference WM10544 
UK National Inventory of War Memorials:

War Memorials Online: 168323

If you have a concern about this memorial please contact the Trust on

War Memorials Condition Survey Toolkit

If you can't attend a workshop, Civic Voice has created a toolkit to allow you to learn how to survey the condition of your war memorials. The toolkit takes you through each step and also provides you with all the resources you need to complete a condition survey. See the toolkit here. Condition Survey Forms are now available to download on Civic Voice's website, so you can get involved as soon as possible! Click here to download a Condition Survey. Click here to download the cover sheet for the survey.

Get involved!

War Memorial workshops in your area!

Come to a workshop to discuss the best way to tackle this war memorials campaign head on and get all the war memorials in your area recorded. Please see up and coming workshops for your area here. If you are interested in attending a workshop please click on the link for your area.

Play your part in protecting war memorials!

Do you want to get involved in giving your local war memorials greater protection from demolition and changes that damage their historic character? You now have a unique opportunity to achieve this. For the first time the public are being asked to research and write entries for the inclusion on the National Heritage List for England, the statutory list of nationally important buildings and monuments.  Of the tens of thousands of war memorials in England just 2,000 are currently on The List and we want to change this. If you want to get involved email 
and we will contact you about the training workshops taking place.  Don’t pass up this opportunity to protect an important part of your local heritage!

Register your war memorial here!
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