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The Boy Scouts War Memorial in Cannon Hill Park

A Grade II Listed Building in Edgbaston, Birmingham

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Latitude: 52.4502 / 52°27'0"N

Longitude: -1.9083 / 1°54'29"W

OS Eastings: 406329

OS Northings: 283590

OS Grid: SP063835

Mapcode National: GBR 5YM.JJ

Mapcode Global: VH9Z2.WP10

Entry Name: The Boy Scouts War Memorial in Cannon Hill Park

Listing Date: 16 February 2016

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1432740

Location: Birmingham, B29

County: Birmingham

Electoral Ward/Division: Edgbaston

Parish: Non Civil Parish

Built-Up Area: Birmingham

Traditional County: Warwickshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): West Midlands

Church of England Parish: Moseley St Mary

Church of England Diocese: Birmingham

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First World War memorial, 1924.


The memorial stands at the edge of Cannon Hill Park at the south-west end of Queen’s Ride, surrounded by a flowerbed with a path leading to the western face. It is within the Grade II* Cannon Hill Park: Queen’s Ride was a riding track laid out in 1897, modified in 1920 when the avenue of trees was planted to commemorate the fallen Scouts.

The tall, concrete, obelisk is triangular on plan, standing on a corniced block with scroll feet which in turn stands on another bigger, tapering, corniced pedestal with large scrolled feet. The memorial stands on a polygonal base.

The western face of the obelisk is decorated with the Toc H lantern cast in relief. The inscription below on the pedestal reads TO THE/ SCOUTS/ WHO FELL IN THE/ GREAT WAR/ AND THE/ WORLD WAR. The eastern face has the Scout fleur-de-lis in relief, with the inscription below PRO PATRIA/ 1914 – 1918/ 1939 – 1945. The northern face has a rose in relief: below this, the pedestal is decorated with the Scout fleur-de-lis with a scroll below containing the inscription BE PREPARED.


The Boy Scouts War Memorial in Cannon Hill Park was unveiled on 27 July 1924 in memory of all of the local Boy Scouts who lost their lives in the First World War. The money was raised by the Old Scouts Association in 1921, to form a permanent memorial at the end of the avenue of trees which had been planted in 1920. Each tree in the avenue commemorates a named Scout. The obelisk was designed by Birmingham architect William Hayward (1877-1957) who lived nearby, and is said to have designed the Grade II-listed bridge over the lake in the park. A later inscription was added to commemorate those Scouts who lost their lives in the Second World War. The memorial was conserved in 2012 by Birmingham Museum Trust and Birmingham City Council.

William Haywood FRIBA (1877-1957) was in partnership with Herbert Tudor Buckland. Their work included the Royal Naval Hospital School at Holbrook, Suffolk (Grade II), college buildings in both Oxford and Cambridge, Carlisle Technical College, and university and school buildings in Birmingham including the Grade II-listed suite of lodges, gates and walls to the Birmingham University campus. Haywood was also responsible for the civic decorations for Birmingham’s 1937 Coronation celebrations. He taught civic design and town planning at Birmingham University (1918-43), and was a founder member of the Birmingham Civic Society in 1918, producing a number of planning schemes for the city.

Reasons for Listing

The Boy Scouts War Memorial in Cannon Hill Park is listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons:
* Historic interest: as an eloquent witness to the tragic impact of world events on the local community, and the sacrifice made by its members of the Scouting Movement in the conflicts of the C20;
* Architectural interest: an elegant obelisk in the Classical style, designed in an unusual material, by William Haywood FRIBA;
* Historical association: with the adjacent avenue of trees on Queen's Ride, each planted for one of the fallen Scouts;
* Group value: standing in Cannon Hill Park (Grade II*).

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