Tuesday, 22 December 2015

War Memorials of Radwell in Hertfordshire

Radwell is a village and civil parish in Hertfordshire, England. It is situated close to the A1 a little to the north of Baldock and Letchworth Garden City and is in the district of North Hertfordshire. [1]

"The parish of Radwell lies in the extreme northwest of the county on the borders of Bedfordshire. It is very small, containing only about 743 acres, of which the greater part is arable land and about one ninth permanent grass. There are only 3½ acres of woodland. The village lies in the south-west of the parish between the road to Biggleswade and the River Ivel, and along a lane which runs westward from the main road to the river." . . . "On the north side of this lane are the church and rectory; a little to the west are the corn mill and mill pond, probably occupying the site of the mill mentioned in the Domesday Survey. Radwell House, the manor-house, and Bury Farm are on the south side of the lane. These buildings form the greater part of the village, which has always been very small, the population in 1428 being only seven inhabitants. In 1656 the people of Radwell petitioned that they might be assisted in the repairing of the Great North Road, which was then in great decay, as the soil was so poor that the winter devoured whatever they were able to lay on in the summer, and the parish was so small that it had only two teams." [2]

All Saints Church, Radwell, Hertfordshire

"The church of All Saints consists of a chancel 20 ft. by 13 ft. 6 in., north vestry 14 ft. by 7 ft., nave 35 ft. by 16 ft. 6 in., and south porch 8 ft. 6 in. by 8 ft. The walls are of flint rubble covered with cement, the roofs are tiled. The chancel arch is the only structural feature in the church which shows detail of an earlier date than the 15th century, and it is mid-14th-century work; the walling may belong to that or an earlier period, but all early detail has been lost in the repairs of the 15th century. The vestry and south porch were added in 1882, when the whole building was re-roofed and thoroughly repaired." [3]

Special Grave Memorial to
Private E. G. Stockham RAVC
Stockham, Elias George
Rank: Private
Service No: 22864
Date of Death: 19/03/1919
Regiment/Service: Royal Army Veterinary Corps
Grave Reference:
Cemetery: Radwell (All Saints) Churchyard
Type of memorial: Special grave memorial with granite cross and kerb

Wording of Special Grave Memorial to
Private E. G. Stockham RAVC
In Memory of
Jack E. G. Stockham,
Who died 19th March 1919.
Julie Stockham
Who died 15th Feb. 1929.
Peace Perfect Peace

Radwell Roll of Honour
In memory of the men
of this Parish
Who sacrificed their lives in
The service of their country

Sergt. Joseph Spicer,
Royal Field Artillery
Pte. Albert Carter,
Bedfordshire Regt.
Pte. Frank Gentle,
Bedfordshire Regt.
Pte. Wilfred Kitchener,
Hertfordshire Regt. (T.F.)
Pte. Eric Pratt,
Lincolnshire Regt.
Pte. Arthur Smith,
Manchester Regt.
Pte. Frank Underhill,
Hertfordshire Regt. (T.F.)

[1] Wikipedia (,_Hertfordshire)
[2] 'Parishes: Radwell.' A History of the County of Hertford: Volume 3. Ed. William Page. London: Victoria County History, 1912. 244-247. British History Online. Web. 19 December 2015. (
[3] 'Parishes: Radwell.' A History of the County of Hertford: Volume 3. Ed. William Page. London: Victoria County History, 1912. 244-247. British History Online. Web. 19 December 2015. (

Monday, 21 December 2015

Clothall War Memorial

Clothall is a village in the civil parish of Clothall and Luffenhall in Hertfordshire, England with a population of 358. It is situated 2.25 miles (3.62 km) south-east of Baldock, and is in the district of North Hertfordshire. The village contains the Church of St Mary the Virgin, which was built of flint and stone around 1350–70, though parts of the church are older, dating to the 12th century. The author Thomas Stanley was born in Clothall in 1625 and is buried in the church. [1]

St Mary the Virgin, Clothall, Hertfordshire

St Mary the Virgin, Clothall, Hertfordshire

In loving memory of the men
Of this parish who made the
Supreme sacrifice in the service
Of their Country during the
Great War 1914-1919.

Maurice Barnes.
Albert Presland.
Harry Hollingsworth.
East Surrey
William Lacey.

And in thanksgiving to God
For sailors and soldiers
Brought home in safety
This tablet is erected by their
Fellow parishioners and friends

Digswell and Harmer Green War Memorial

Digswell is an ancient village in the English county of Hertfordshire which is recorded in the 1086 Domesday Book. The present Digswell residential area centred on Welwyn North station has a population of about 1600, with a shop or two, and a pub called the Cowper Arms. Notable past residents here include Kenneth Allsop, Alan Brazil, Graham Richard James, the police reformer Sir Arthur Young, H.G. Wells and American actor Barry Chapman. [1]

Harmer Green And Digswell Memorial

The memorial comprises a tall plain celtic cross on a square plinth with an incised inscription and two stepped base.

The memorial is located on Harmer Village Green, Harmer Green La, Harmer Green, Welwyn Hatfield.

Wheel of the Cross
The dates of WW1 are shown in relief in the wheel of the cross.

To the
Glorious memory
Of the men
Who gave their
Lives in
The Great War
1914 – 1919

Victor Cadwell
Bedfordshire Regiment
Lieutenant C.H.Dixon
Royal Field Artillery
L.Corp.W. W. Edwards
East Kent Regiment
CSM E.T.Ephgrave
Bedfordshire Regiment
Albert F. Knapp
Royal W Kent Regiment
James Mardell
Bedfordshire Regiment
Capt. Herbert F. Miles
K.O.Scottish Borderer
Sub-Lieut.Owen Philip Powell RN
Capt. David Russell
London Regiment (P.O.Rifles)
Lieut. Lawrence Russell
West Riding Regiment
Sergt. Edward Shadbolt
Bedfordshire Regiment
L.Corp.Frank Underhill
Hertfordshire Regiment
Capt. J. H.L.Yorke M.C.
Pembroke I.Y.Attd Welch Regiment

1939 – 1945
C.P.O John Walker Royal Navy

[1] Wikipedia (

Tuesday, 15 December 2015

War Memorials of Walkern in Hertfordshire

Walkern ('Walchra' in Domesday) is a village and civil parish in East Hertfordshire. It is located on the River Beane about two miles from Stevenage, and is noted as the home of Jane Wenham, who was in 1712 the last woman in England to be convicted of witchcraft and condemned to death.

The River Beane, a chalk stream, crosses the village street of Church End in a ford, which is overlooked by the medieval Bridgefoot Farm and thatched Wych Elm cottage. The parish church of St Mary the Virgin is the oldest village church in Hertfordshire, with a Saxon wall and rare chalk rood (crucifix) dating back to the middle 10th century. St Mary's also has a fine Purbeck marble effigy which is possibly that of William de Lanvalei, baron of Walkern in the early 13th century and one of the 25 sureties named in the Magna Carta elected to ensure that King John adhered to the 'Law of the Land' set down in the charter in 1215. [1]

St Mary the Virgin, Walkern, Hertfordshire

The churchyard is the site of three graves for men of the British forces who died during the two world wars.

J Parker Notts and Derby Regiment

Parker, J
Rank: Private
Service No: 102281
Date of Death: 09/05/1918
Regiment/Service: Sherwood Foresters (Notts and Derby Regiment) 2nd/6th Bn.
Grave Reference:

In Loving Memory of

Alfred Savage who passed away Feby. 25th 1919

Aged 33 years
At Rest

Savage, Alfred
Rank: Private
Service No: M/349525
Date of Death: 25/02/1919
Age: 33
Regiment/Service: Royal Army Service Corps M.T.
Grave Reference: C. 6.
Additional Information: Born Cottered. Son of Charles and Maria Savage; husband of Rose Savage, of Stoke Doyle, Walkern,. [3]

T W Hatley Essex Regiment

Hatley, T W
Rank: Serjeant
Service No: 546353
Date of Death: 30/11/1941
Age: 32
Regiment/Service: Essex Regiment 7th Bn.
Grave Reference: N.E. of Church on North Boundary.
Additional Information:Son of Thomas and May Hatley, of Stebbing, Essex; husband of Margaret Hatley, of Stebbing. [4]

South of the village of Walkern the main Walkern War Memorial is located at the junction of High Street, Bennington Road and the road that leads uphill to Walkern Hall.

The monument comprises a simple Latin cross in Forest of Dean stone, with a bronze wreath and sword at the top, on a square plinth and three stepped base. The Memorial was unveiled and dedicated on 3 July 1921. [5]

To the Glory of God
in loving memory of
the men of this Parish
who gave their lives for
God and Country
Honour and deepest Gratitude
to all who fought in the
Great War
1914 - 1918

Gilbert Albone,
6th. Beds Rgt.
Cuthbert Albone,
1st. Herts Rgt.
John Belchamber,
4th. R Sussex Rgt.
George Clements,
9th. Essex Rgt.
Arthur Clements,
4th. West. Riding Rgt.
Ernest. Carter,
Beds Rgt.
Arthur Carter,
4th. Beds Rgt.
Reginald Carter,
1st. Herts Rgt.
Cecil Cordell,
1st. Herts Rgt.
Henry Edwards,
1st. Herts Rgt.

Peter Fitzjohn,
T.M.B. R.F.A.
Lg Smn
Percy Goodchild,
H.M.S. Defence
Ord Smn
George Groom,
H.M.S. Fmdle
George Green,
1st. Essex Rgt.
Randolph Green,
8th. City of Ldn Rgt.
Reginald Green,
2nd. K.R.R. Corps.
John Hale,
Royal Fusiliers
Bert Hart,
20th. Hussars
Stanley Knight,
2nd. Royal Berks.
Arthur Mackie,
1st. Beds Rgt.

Fred Mace,
Tank Corps.
Henry Osborne,
10th. East. Kent Rgt.
James Osborne
1st. East. Kent Rgt.
Jesse Parker,
Notts & Derby.
Walter Savage,
3rd. Royal Sussex Rgt.
Charles Spicer,
1st. Herts Rgt.
Alfred Savage,
M.T.A.S. Corps.
Wilfred Smith,
Queen’s R.W. Surreys
2nd Lieut
Donald S Wright,
8th. Beds Rgt.
Harold Warner,
M.T.A.S. Corps.

And in the Second World War
1939 - 1945
Stanley Sheppard
Chf PO
Eric Canning
HMS Porcupine
Eric Barwick
Herts & Beds
Fred Clements
5th. Suffolks
Actg PO
Fred R Milton

[1] Wikipedia (
[2] CWGC Record (,%20J)
[3] CWGC Record (,%20ALFRED)
[4] CWGC Record (,%20T%20W)
[5] Walkern History Society (

Monday, 14 December 2015

Other War Memorials of Ashwell in Hertfordshire

Ashwell’s war memorial stands east of the main village, at the junction of Station Road with Lucas Lane, at the corner of the Ashwell recreation ground. It comprises a Lutyens War Cross in Portland stone which is set on a square podium which itself stands on two circular steps rather than the usual three. The memorial, the ground to the front retained by a retaining kerb, is approached by a flight of six steps, contemporary with, and integral to, the memorial.

Ashwell's WW1 memorial 1921, by Sir Edwin Lutyens.

Ashwell’s war memorial committee was set up in 1919 under the chairmanship of Wolverley Attwood Fordham, a local brewer, with his wife Phyllis as secretary. It invited proposals from Sir Reginald Blomfield (who submitted a design for a cross), Sir Edwin Lutyens (a cross, obelisk or Stone of Remembrance) and Tappers, a local builder (a cenotaph). The Lutyens cross was preferred and was endorsed following a public meeting in January 1920. The Ashwell War Memorial is one of only two Parish war memorials in England designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens.

The cross was built by Messrs Holland, Hannen and Cubitt Ltd, the contractors for the Cenotaph in Whitehall. It was unveiled by Lord Hampden, the Lord Lieutenant of Hertfordshire, on 4 December 1921. The cost was £557 with Lutyens being paid a fee of £42 19s 10d.

Ashwell war memorial is listed at Grade II for the following reasons:
  • Historic interest: as an eloquent witness to the tragic impacts of world events on this community, and the sacrifices it made in the First World War;
  • Architect: by the nationally renowned architect Sir Edwin Landseer Lutyens (1869-1944), who designed 58 extant memorials at home and abroad including the Cenotaph in Whitehall;
  • Design: a simple yet elegant War Cross, with the unusual feature of a two-stepped circular base rather than three. [1]
Front Panels (East):

In honour of the men of
Ashwell who fought in the
Great War and in loving
memory of those who fell

our glorious dead

Arthur Day
Albert A. Kirchin
Henry I. Dellar
Bruce Law
Julius Everden
Thomas Lee
William D. Eversden
George Longland
Percy Farr
Harry Loveday
Arthur G. Gentle
Herbert G. P. Maddams
John W. Goodwin
Albert E. Mole
Frank Harradine
John C. Noyes
Albert C. Hyder
Walter Picking
Tom Hyder
Frank Potton

their name liveth
for evermore

[The names of those who fell in the Second World War are inscribed on the podium.]

William Bean
Richard A Raikes
Stanley A. Marshall
Anthony Hill D.S.O. D.F.C.

George A. Page
James Law

William Pettingell
Kenneth Marsden

Douglas Waldock

Left Panel (South):

Frederick Anns
Albert Amtman
Montague S. Austin
George Bryant
Harvey Bryant M.C.
Percy A.W. Bullimore
Edward Camp
Stanley Camp
Herbert Covington
Lewis Daniels
H. G. Waldock Died Aug 23rd 1923

Right Panel (North):

James Revels
Percy Revels
Bertie Sheldrick
John Sheldrick
Harry Smith
Herbert Smith
Oben Strickland
Harry W. G. Waldock
Percy C. Wilkins
John C. Winter
Arthur Worboys

Ashwell United Reform Church was built in 1852 as the Congregational Church, replacing an earlier building destroyed by fire in 1850. [2]

Ashwell United Reform Church

Its churchyard contains a single CWGC grave and headstone for Private Herbert Covington also mentioned on the Left Panel (South) of the memorial above.

CWGC Headstone for Private Herbert Covington,
United Reform Church, Ashwell, Hertfordshire

Covington, Herbert
Rank: Private
Service No: 26534
Date of Death: 05/09/1920
Age: 39
Regiment/Service: King's Own (Royal Lancaster Regiment) 9th Bn.
Grave Reference: Near North-East corner of Chapelyard.
Cemetery: Ashwell United Reform Church
Additional Information: Son of Mrs. Emily Covington, of Mill St., Ashwell. [3]

[1] Historic England (
[2] Hertfordshire Churches in Photographs (
[3] GWGC Records (,%20HERBERT)

Friday, 11 December 2015

War Memorials of Wallington in Hertfordshire

Wallington is a small village in Hertfordshire, near the town of Baldock. Nearby villages include Rushden and Sandon. It is within the civil parish of Rushden and Wallington. The Church of St Mary is a Grade II Listed Building lying at the southern end of the village. The nave, west tower and windows date from the mid-15th Century. The chancel was rebuilt in 1864. [1]

Church of St Mary, Wallington, Hertfordshire

The Icknield Way Path passes through the village on its 110 mile journey from Ivinghoe Beacon in Buckinghamshire to Knettishall Heath in Suffolk.

The church contains a rectangular WW1 remembrance tablet in a moulded marble frame with lettering in black.

WW1 remembrance tablet - St Mary's Wallington

To the Glory Of God
And in Remembrance of

Ambrose, E. E.,
Edwards, W.,
Haggar, G.,
Fisher, W.,
Scoote, B.,
Haggar, B.,
Ward, A.,
Ridley, C.,
Ward, T. W.,
Ridley, T.,
Who died, and of
Turner, B. J.,
Bonfield, A. E.,
Ward, F.,
Draper, F.,
Wilmot, H.,

Who also served abroad in the
Great War 1914-1918

Wallington is also special for another reason as Eric Arthur Blair (25 June 1903 – 21 January 1950) resided here from 1936 to 1940 at a cottage at 2 Kits Lane, known as "The Stores". He also spent occasional weekends there (when he was otherwise mainly in London) until he gave up the lease on the cottage in 1947. Eric Blair is better known by his pen name George Orwell and it is thought that his experiences here in Wallington contributed to his writing during 1944 of his famous novella Animal Farm (1945). The farm in the village is, as in the book called Manor Farm.

He had married his first wife Eileen O'Shaughnessy at St Mary's church on 9 June 1936.

Orwell's cottage in Kits Lane, Wallington, Hertfordshire

The Herts County Council commemorative plaque on Orwell's cottage in Wallington

[1] Wikipedia (,_Hertfordshire)

Thursday, 10 December 2015

War Memorials of Anstey in Hertfordshire

Anstey is a village and civil parish in the East Hertfordshire district of Hertfordshire, England, about fifteen miles north-east of Stevenage. According to the 2001 census the population of the parish was 338. There is at least one book on the history of this village titled "Anstey, a Hertfordshire Parish" written in 1929 by Rev Frank Ricardo Williams, M.A. He was the rector from 1907–28,( died 19 May 1937). The parish church dates from the 12th Century and is dedicated to St George [1].

St George’s Church in Anstey
St George’s Church in Anstey is one of five churches in a benefice. For information about the benefice and details of church services please visit the Benefice website at

St George’s is a medieval building dating from the 12th Century. It was rebuilt around 1200 by Sir Richard de Anestie whose ornate but damaged tomb is in the church. Some of the material from the castle which stood behind the church is thought to have been incorporated in the building. The church is of cruxiform design and the Central Tower holds a ring of six bells, the earliest being from the 15th Century and the last from 1778.

WW1 Monument. Celtic cross. Bas-relief sword on the cross.

WW1 Monument - List of the dead

To The Glory Of God
And In Honoured Memory Of
The Men Of This Parish
Who Fell In The Great War

B. Bentley
H. G. Hicks
H. J. Bradford
K. Martin
B. G. Catley
F. L. Scripps
A. Caton
H. R. Smith
F. J. Chappell
G. W. Strange
R. Coxall
H. P. Wick

They Died That We Might Live

As well as the monumental cross there is also a rectangular brass plaque inside the church with inscription lettering in black and red. Strangely the plaque only has ten of the twelve names found on the cross.

WW1 Rectangular brass plaque.

To The Memory Of
Those Who Fell In The Great War

Cpl. Bert Bentley. M.G.C.
L. Cpl. Bernard Catley. M.G.C.
L. Cpl. Frank Scripps. R.F.
L. Cpl. George Strange. Bed. Reg
Pte. Herbert Smith. Bed. Reg.
Pte. Herbert Bradford. R.E.
Pte. Frederick Chappell. A.I.F.
Pte. Reggie Coxall. E. Surrey. Reg.
Pte. George Hicks. Middlesex.
Driver Arthur Caton. R.F.A.

A very interesting and detailed history of these men lost in WW1 has been researched by Jenny Goymour and published online on the Anstey Village website at In addition to the fallen she has also researched the 45 men, from Anstey, who are reported as having served in WW1. So far she has found about a third of the 45 and details can be seen at If you have any further information on any of these men please email Jenny at

As well as the monuments for the fallen of WW1 the church also has a framed and glazed roll of honour for those who served in WW2, with lettering by hand in black.

Anstey Roll of Service in WW2

Parish of Anstey
Roll of Service in World War
Baker. S.
Flack. L. H.
Bentley. A.
Flack. L. S.
Catley. F.
Fordham. D.
Catley. H.
Grillet. C.
Catley. P.
Honeyborn. H.
Chappell. D.
Inwood. R.
Chappell. F.
Kilkeen. J.
Chappell. L.
Martin. T.
Chappell. R.
Patmore. V.
Chappell. T.
Phillips. E. F.
Copeland. D.
Priest. R.
Dodkin. E.
Stoten. L.

UK Friends of the 398th Bomb Group created a memorial to the men who died in the air and ground crews stationed at Base 131, Nuthampstead, England during the twelve-month period in 1944-45. This memorial was in the form of a beautiful stained-glass window in St. George's Church, Anstey, England with the names of all 298 men who died appearing in the stained glass.

398 Bomb Group USAF Window commemorating the men who gave their lives

The artist, Patrick Reyntiens, depicted the flight of the Israelites by symbolizing the Pillars of Smoke and Pillars of Fire that led them out of Egypt by day and by night. The window consists of three columns. The one on the left represents the smoky clouds, out of which stream many B-17 Flying Fortresses ascending upward. The column on the right represents the fire with B-17s descending, symbolizing the tumult through which the survivors passed. The window includes butterflies whose wings are inscribed with the names of the 298 men who gave their lives. The memorial was dedicated by the Bishop of St Albans and unveiled by HRH The Duke of Gloucester on June 11, 2000 attended by more than a hundred members of the 398th, English friends, dignitaries, and officials.

[1] Wikipedia (,_Hertfordshire)