War Memorial, c.1921 to a design by Sir Reginald Blomfeld.
Reason for Listing
The Great Chart War Memorial, of c.1921 to a design by Sir Reginald Blomfield, is listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons:
* Historic interest: it has strong cultural and historic significance within both a local and national context;
* Commemorative: it forms a poignant reminder of the tragic impact of world events upon an individual community, commemorating the men from the parish of Great Chart who lost their lives fighting in the First and Second World Wars;
* Group value: it has group value with the Grade I listed St Mary's Church to the west and the adjacent Village School of 1845, listed at Grade II.
The Great Chart war memorial was unveiled on 4 August 1921 by Lieutenant-Colonel John Body and dedicated by the Revd Neville A. Holt. Its designer, Sir Reginald Blomfield, attended the ceremony. The expense of the memorial was met through subscriptions to the Great Chart Sailors’ and Soldiers’ War Fund, as commemorated by an inscription on the base. The names of the fallen of the Second World War were later added, and the memorial was re-dedicated by the Archdeacon of Maidstone on 3 April 1949. The memorial was restored in 1995.
The Cross of Sacrifice is a standard design by Sir Reginald Blomfield for the Imperial War Graves Commission (now Commonwealth War Graves Commission). Blomfield wrote, ‘What I wanted to do in designing this Cross was to make it as abstract and impersonal as I could, to free it from any association with any particular style and above all to keep clear of any of the sentimentalities of Gothic. This was a man's war far too terrible for any fripperies, and I hoped to get within range of the infinite in this symbol of the ideals of those who had gone out to die’.
War memorial of 1921, situated in a raised memorial garden, accessed from The Street via a flight of steps. Portland Stone cross set on an octagonal pedestal, which is in turn resting on a stepped octagonal base. The cross tapers gently, and a bronze sword is superimposed over the crosspiece. Carved inscription at the pedestal, picked out in black paint. Dedication: ‘TO OUR GLORIOUS DEAD / THEIR NAME LIVETH FOR EVERMORE’ and names of the fallen, recorded by date. On the reverse, ‘ERECTED BY THE GREAT CHART SAILORS’ AND SOLDIERS’ FUND’. A later tablet, affixed to the base, commemorates the fallen of the Second World War.
Listed building text is © Crown Copyright. Reproduced under licence.