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Sutton war memorial - white stone monument with statue of soldier set in a churchyard

War memorials

It is estimated that there are around 100,000 war memorials throughout Britain, built as symbols of commemoration for war dead. The notion of commemorating those lost in war developed significantly towards the end of the nineteenth century. 

Kingsway war memorial - stone monument inscribed with names of war dead

The aftermath of the First World War became the 'great age' of memorial building, as thousands were erected across Britain. The effects of the First World War were immensely far-reaching, and in response came a nation-wide drive for commemoration. This drive for commemoration was compounded by a ban on repatriation of the dead, as over 700,000 Britons lost their lives, and it became a logistical impossibility to transport numbers so high.

Although the Second World War saw fewer military losses, local communities continued the drive for commemoration, as new memorials were constructed and many names were added to those erected after the First World War.

In the time since the end of the Second World War, names have been continually added to memorials in remembrance of those lost in more recent conflicts, such as the Korean War, the Northern Ireland Conflict, and the War in Afghanistan.

What are war memorials?

War memorials exist in many different forms, but all exist as an object to preserve the memory of a conflict or war and those involved in it. Typically, a war memorial takes the form of a plaque, monument, or sculpture, but can also include any tangible object that has been erected or dedicated to commemorate.

Generally, war memorials are erected by local communities and groups associated with those remembered.

War memorials act as historical touchstones, linking the past and the present as focal points for acknowledging and remembering the sacrifice of those that served, fought, and died in conflict, especially on occasions such as Remembrance Sunday.

War memorials in Ashfield

Titchfield Park war memorial, Park Drive, Hucknall

  • Location: Titchfield Park War Memorial, Park Drive, Hucknall, NG15 7LU
  • Listing: Grade II listed on October 12th, 1988. List entry number: 1275905
  • Commemoration: First World War (1914-1918), Second World War (1939-1945), Palestine Conflict (1918-1948), Cyprus Emergency (1955-1959), Malayan Emergency (1948-1960), Afghanistan Conflict (2001-2014)
  • Date unveiled: 3 September 1922
  • Unveiled by: Brig Gen Sir Joseph Frederick Laycock KCMG DSO TD
  • Number of names: 101
  • Cost: 1922: £1,400, raised by public subscription
  • Inscription text: “In memory of the sailors and soldiers of Hucknall who gave their lives in the Great War 1914 – 1918”
  • Materials: Portland stone, Bronze, Sandstone, Marble
  • Historic information source(s): Sheffield Daily Telegraph, Thursday 16th of March, 1922
  • Imperial War Museum reference: 58983.

Sutton Cemetery war memorial, Huthwaite Road, Sutton in Ashfield

  • Location: Sutton in Ashfield Cemetery, Huthwaite Road, Sutton in Ashfield, NG17 2EL
  • Listing: Grade II listed on October 12th, 1988. List entry number: 1275242
  • Commemoration: First World War (1914-1918), Second World War (1939-1945), Korean War (1950-1953), Northern Ireland Conflict (1969-1998)
  • Date unveiled: 16 October 1921
  • Unveiled by: John Dove, a local and Crimean War Veteran
  • Dedication by: Reverend A. T. Cowen and Reverend John Stephenson
  • Number of names: 430
  • Cost: 1921 - £700, raised by public subscription. Adjusted for present day - Approximately £33,280
  • Inscription text: “To the glorious memory of the Sutton-in-Ashfield men who fell in the Great War”
  • Materials: White Sicilian Marble
  • Historic information source(s): Nottingham Journal, Monday 17th of October 1921; Mansfield Reporter, Friday 13th of August 1920
  • Imperial War Museum reference: 19432.

Huthwaite war memorial

  • Location: Huthwaite War Memorial, Sutton Rd, Huthwaite, Sutton-in-Ashfield NG17 2NQ
  • Listing: Grade II listed on October 12th, 1988. List entry number: 1275907
  • Commemoration: First World War (1914-1918), Second World War (1939-1945)
  • Date unveiled: 10 April 1925
  • Unveiled by: Col. Sir Lancelot Rolleston K.C.B., D.S.O
  • Dedication by: Reverend William Boulton
  • Number of names: 77
  • Cost: 1925 - £500, raised by public subscription. Adjusted for present day - approximately £29,523
  • Inscription text: “They Nobly Played Their Part, They Heard Their Countries Call, For God King and Right, They Gave Their All”
  • Materials: Darley Dale stone, Bronze
  • Historic information source(s): The Mansfield Reporter and Sutton Times, 17th of April, 1925
  • Imperial War Museum reference: 14872.

Downing Street war memorial

  • Location: Downing Street War Memorial, Junction with Mansfield Road, Sutton-in-Ashfield, NG17 4EF

St Andrew's Church war memorial, Skegby

  • Location: St. Andrew’s Church War Memorial, Mansfield Road, Skegby, Sutton-in-Ashfield, NG17 3DD

All Saints Church war memorial, Sutton in Ashfield

  • Location: All Saints’ Church War Memorial, Stanton Hill, Sutton-in-Ashfield, NG17 3HF

Kingsway Old Cemetery war memorial, Kingsway, Kirkby in Ashfield

  • Location: Kingsway Old Cemetery War Memorial, Kingsway, Kirkby-in-Ashfield, NG17 7FJ
  • Listing: Grade II listed on October 12th, 1988. List entry number: 1221364
  • Commemoration: First World War (1914-1918), Second World War (1939-1945), Northern Ireland Conflict (1969-1998), War in Afghanistan (2001-2014)
  • Number of names: 239
  • Materials: Granite, Lead lettering
  • Imperial War Museum reference: 58949

Jacksdale war memorial

  • Location: Jacksdale War Memorial, Junction of Main Road and Wagstaff Lane, Jacksdale, NG16 5LF
  • Listing: Grade II listed on May 16th, 2016. List entry number: 1431440
  • Commemoration: First World War (1914-1918), Second World War (1939-1945)
  • Date unveiled: 9 July 1921
  • Unveiled by:Mr. B. McLaren and Mrs. McLaren
  • Dedication by: Rev. R.D. Weller, Rev. W. Cherry, Rev. M. Dobinson, and Rev. F.J. Khan
  • Cost: £440, raised by public subscription.
  • Designer: Beresford & Son.
  • Inscription text: “By Their Sacrifice We Live 1914-1918, 1939-1945”; “We Will Remember Them”.
  • Materials: Stancliffe stone, Slate, Carrara marble
  • Historic information source(s): “The Story of the Jacksdale Soldier”, Jacksdale and Westwood Community and Heritage
  • Imperial War Museum reference: 26889.

Selston war memorial, Selston

  • Location: Selston War Memorial, Alfreton Road, Selston, NG16 6DW
  • Listing: Not listed
  • Commemoration: First World War (1914-1918), Second World War (1939-1945)
  • Date unveiled: 29 July 2014
  • Unveiled by: Sam Wilson and Gail Turner
  • Dedication by: Rev. Fiona Shouler
  • Number of names: 84
  • Cost: £38,000. Funded by Nottinghamshire County, Ashfield District, and Selston Parish Councils
  • Inscription text: “This memorial was erected to commemorate the lives of those who made the ultimate sacrifice in service to their country”
  • Materials: Portland Stone
  • Historic information source(s): “Selston unveils £38,000 war memorial”, Eastwood and Kimberley Advertiser, July 29, 2014.