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Brierley Hill War Memorial

A Grade II Listed Building in Brierley Hill, Dudley

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Coordinates

Latitude: 52.4784 / 52°28'42"N

Longitude: -2.1256 / 2°7'32"W

OS Eastings: 391567

OS Northings: 286725

OS Grid: SO915867

Mapcode National: GBR 4DS.VY

Mapcode Global: VH91B.3YNY

Entry Name: Brierley Hill War Memorial

Listing Date: 27 January 2015

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1423776

Location: Dudley, DY5

County: Dudley

Electoral Ward/Division: Brierley Hill

Parish: Non Civil Parish

Built-Up Area: Brierley Hill

Traditional County: Staffordshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): West Midlands

Church of England Parish: Brierley Hill

Church of England Diocese: Worcester

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Summary

A war memorial, commemorating the dead of the First and Second World Wars and the Korean War, Cyprus Emergency and Malayan Emergency.

Description

A war memorial, commemorating the dead of the First and Second World Wars and the Korean War, Cyprus Emergency and Malayan Emergency. Unveiled in 1921, with later additions. Designed by Councillor JT Fereday and Francis Lane and carved by George Brown & sons of Kidderminster.

MATERIALS: limestone for the platform, with grey granite for the plinth and Sicilian marble used for the columns to the corners, the relief panels and the statue.

PLAN: the tall, square plinth supports a figure statue and there are railings to the edge of the monument which rise from a raised curb.
Each face of the plinth is divided into two stages, both of which have columns to the corners. The stages are divided by a lintel, above which is set a carved relief panel, showing service activity, and below which are carved the 205 names of the fallen from the First World War. The north face differs in having the following inscription: ‘IN GRATITUDE & ADMIRATION / THIS MONUMENT / WAS ERECTED BY THEIR FELLOW / TOWN FOLK TO THE MEMORY OF / BRIERLEY HILL MEN / WHO LOYALLY GAVE THEIR LIVES / IN DEFENCE OF / COUNRTY AND CIVILIZATION / AGAINST THE AGGRESSIVE / AMBITIONS OF / GERMANY, / AUSTRIA & TURKEY / IN THE GREAT WAR / WHICH LASTED / FROM / AUGUST 4TH 1914 / TO / NOVEMBER 11TH 1918. / THEIR NAME / LIVETH / FOR EVERMORE’. Above this, the relief panel shows men going over the top from trenches into no-man’s land. On the lintel is inscribed ‘FOR RIGHTEOUSNESS’ and to the plinth is the word ‘FLANDERS’. The west side has a weathered relief panel, showing the Arethusa which, having sunk a German warship, is sending out its boats to rescue the survivors. On the lintel below this is inscribed ‘FOR HOMELAND’ and on the plinth ‘GALLIPOLI’. The relief on the east side shows artillery in action and the lintel is inscribed ‘FOR KINDRED’, and the plinth ’PALESTINE’. The south side shows a wounded man on a stretcher being tended and the words ‘FOR FREEDOM’ on the lintel and ‘FRANCE’ on the plinth.

The statue of the soldier above shows him in uniform, charging with bayonet fixed. The top step of the limestone plinth has a cambered upper surface and groups of three flutings to its riser on each side.

In the space between the platform and the kerb later, angled tablets have been placed, commemorating the dead from the Second World War, the Korean War and the Cyprus and Malayan Emergencies. The kerb has three cast iron mace finials to each side, which now support later panels of wrought iron, but perhaps originally had decorative chains. It is inscribed on its south face with the wording ‘G BROWN & SONS / SCULPTORS / KIDDR. & ST.BRIDGE.’

This List entry has been amended to add sources for War Memorials Online and the War Memorials Register. These sources were not used in the compilation of this List entry but are added here as a guide for further reading, 10 November 2017.

History

The memorial was unveiled on 12 November 1921 by a party of local clergy and civic dignitaries. The initial design for the monument was by Councillor Fereday and this was elaborated by Francis Lane, a preacher and local businessman. The ex-servicemen’s committee was asked to select one of their number to pose for the statue. They chose Stanley Harley, the first Brierley Hill man to be awarded the DCM.

Reasons for Listing

The War Memorial, Church Street, Brierley Hill, is listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons:
* Historic interest: as an eloquent witness to the tragic impacts of world wars on this community, and the sacrifices it made in the various conflicts of the C20;
* Artistic interest: as the work of a notable local firm, which includes sculpture and relief panels of good quality;
* Sculptural value: of significant value as an artistic representation designed by local people and depicting a local hero portrayed as the charging soldier.

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