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HER Number:MDV104052
Name:Bideford Town War Memorial, The Peace Park, Chudleigh Fort

Summary

A tall granite memorial cross standing at the highest point of the park overlooking the river Torridge.

Location

Grid Reference:SS 459 263
Map Sheet:SS42NE
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishBideford
DistrictTorridge
Ecclesiastical ParishBIDEFORD

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses: none recorded

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • WAR MEMORIAL (World War I to XX - 1914 AD to 2000 AD (Between))

Full description

Walls, S., 2012, Bideford War Memorial Cross (Ground Photograph). SDV356249.


Ordnance Survey, 2013, MasterMap (Cartographic). SDV350786.

'War Memorial' marked.


Brine, M. E., 2013, War Memorials (Website). SDV351333.

Bideford's town War Memorial on Churchill Fort sited for its commanding view of the town and high visibility from most of Bideford. The land on which the Memorial stands forms part of the actual memorial and is known as The Peace Park.
Two further memorial plaques are in St. Mary's Church.


Imperial War Museum, 2014, War Memorials Archive, 2907 (Website). SDV356253.

A 17th century fort and its grounds supplemented by a rough hewn latin cross on a square battered pedastal, square plinth and square base. The inscription is on the cross in black lettering on a polished face of the plinth. A plaque for the Second World War is attached to the shaft of the cross.
Inscription:
Plaque: 1939 - 1945/ IN HONOURED/ MEMORY/ OF THOSE/ WHO GAVE THEIR LIVES/ AND/ DEEP GRATITUDE/ TO THOSE/ WHO SERVED FROM THE/ BOROUGH/ OF BIDEFORD

Plinth: THE FORT DATING FROM THE 17TH CENTURY, WITH/ THE GROUND ADJOINING, WAS ACQUIRED BY PUBLIC SUBSCRIPTIONS AND PRESENTED TO THE TOWN AS/ A WAR MEMORIAL IN THE YEAR 1921/ THIS MONUMENT IS ERECTED TO THE GLORY OF GOD/ AND IN MEMORY OF THOSE WHO GAVE THEIR LIVES/ IN THE GREAT WAR/ 1914 - 1918/ THE NAMES OF THE FALLEN ARE KEPT WITH THE BOROUGH RECORDS/ "LIVE THOU FOR ENGLAND/ WE FOR ENGLAND DIED"/ AND 1939 - 1945


Historic England, 2017, Bideford War Memorial Cross, Chudleigh Fort, Chudleigh Avenue, Bideford, Devon (List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest). SDV360233.

Notification that Historic England is currently considering the memorial for listing as part of its First World War Commemoration project and has completed a consultation report setting out the factual information upon which they will base their decision.
History
The aftermath of the First World War saw the biggest single wave of public commemoration
ever with tens of thousands of memorials erected across England. This was the result of both
the huge impact on communities of the loss of three quarters of a million British lives, and also
the official policy of not repatriating the dead which meant that the memorials provided the
main focus of the grief felt at this great loss.
Various different memorial schemes were devised according to the needs and wishes of each
local community, some choosing to create an amenity such as a public hall or park. At
Bideford, a scheme to lay out the site of Chudleigh Fort as a memorial park was decided as
an appropriate way to commemorate the town’s losses in the First World War, whilst providing
an amenity for the future. The area had been enclosed with railings by early February 1921
and the War Memorial Committee members recommended that a cross be erected in the new
park: the sum of £1,100 had been raised by public subscription and, after the purchase of the
site and payments for the railings, £183 remained in hand.
The tall granite cross would cost £290, requiring further fundraising. Debate amongst
Bideford Urban District Council members during the Summer of 1921 revealed some
disagreement about the nature of the memorial, but the park was opened and its cross
unveiled on 24 August that year. The complete scheme, costing £1,250, included the
purchase of the Fort and just over two acres of land, the railings, the re-location of the
entrance gates, and the cross, unveiled by the Mayor, Councillor JU Fulford.
The memorial commemorates 191 men, and two women, both serving in Queen Mary's Army
Auxiliary Corps. It was dedicated by Archdeacon T Newton Leeke and the President of
Bideford and District Free Church, Reverend WH Chamings. A plaque recording a dedication
for the Second World War was added to the cross, commemorating the local service
personnel who died in that conflict. The park railings have since been removed.
Details
The park is in the part of Bideford known as East-the-Water. The c7m tall, rough-hewn
granite memorial cross stands at the highest point of the park, overlooking the River Torridge
and the old town on the west bank of the river. It is c35m to the east of Chudleigh Fort (Grade
II), the remains of a Civil War fortification re-built in the nineteenth-century.
The plain Latin cross rises from a tapering plinth, which stands on a deep granite step. That is
raised on a concrete step. The dedications are recorded on the front face of the plinth,
reading THE FORT, DATING FROM THE 17TH CENTURY, WITH/ THE GROUND
ADJOINING, WAS ACQUIRED BY PUBLIC SUBSCRIPTION AND PRESENTED TO THE
TOWN AS/ A WAR MEMORIAL IN THE YEAR 1921./ THIS MONUMENT IS ERECTED TO
THE GLORY OF GOD/ AND IN MEMORY OF THOSE WHO GAVE THEIR LIVES/ IN THE
GREAT WAR/ 1914-1918./ THE NAMES OF THE FALLEN ARE KEPT WITH THE
BOROUGH RECORDS./
“LIVE THOU FOR ENGLAND,/ WE FOR ENGLAND DIED.”/ AND 1939 – 1945.
The later bronze plaque is fixed to the front face of the cross shaft. Its inscription reads 1939
– 1945/ IN HONOURED/ MEMORY/ OF THOSE/ WHO GAVE THEIR LIVES/ AND/ DEEP
GRATITUDE/ TO THOSE/ WHO SERVED FROM THE/ BOROUGH/ OF BIDEFORD.


Historic England, 2017, Bideford War Memorial Cross, Chudleigh Fort, Chudleigh Avenue, Bideford, Devon (List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest). SDV360312.

Notification that the memorial has been added to the List of Buildings of Special Architectural or Historic Interest at Grade II.


Historic England, 2017, National Heritage List for England, 1448216 (National Heritage List for England). SDV359963.

Bideford War Memorial Cross.
Summary of Building
First World War memorial cross in granite, unveiled 1921, with later additions for the Second World War.
Reasons for Designation
Bideford War Memorial, which stands above Chudleigh Fort, is listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons:
Historic interest:
* As an eloquent witness to the tragic impact of world events on this local community, and the sacrifice it has made in the conflicts of the C20;
Architectural interest:
* A prominently-sited and imposing granite memorial cross;
Group value: * With the Grade II-listed Chudleigh Fort. .
History
The aftermath of the First World War saw the biggest single wave of public commemoration ever with tens of thousands of memorials erected across England. This was the result of both the huge impact on communities of the loss of three quarters of a million British lives, and also the official policy of not repatriating the dead which meant that the memorials provided the main focus of the grief felt at this great loss.
Various different memorial schemes were devised according to the needs and wishes of each local community, some choosing to create an amenity such as a public hall or park. At Bideford, a scheme to lay out the site of Chudleigh Fort as a memorial park was decided as an appropriate way to commemorate the town’s losses in the First World War, whilst also providing an amenity for the future. The area had been enclosed with railings by early February 1921 and the War Memorial Committee members recommended that a cross be erected in the new park: the sum of £1,100 had been raised by public subscription and, after the purchase of the site and payments for the railings, £183 remained in hand.
The tall granite cross would cost £290, requiring further fundraising. Debate amongst Bideford Urban District Council members during the Summer of 1921 revealed some disagreement about the nature of the memorial, but the park was opened and its cross unveiled on 24 August that year. The complete scheme, costing £1,250, included the purchase of the Fort and just over two acres of land, the railings, the re-location of the entrance gates, and the cross, unveiled by the Mayor, Councillor JU Fulford.
The memorial commemorates 191 men, and two women, both serving in Queen Mary's Army Auxiliary Corps. It was dedicated by Archdeacon T Newton Leeke and the President of Bideford and District Free Church, Reverend WH Chamings. A plaque recording a dedication for the Second World War was added to the cross, commemorating the local service personnel who died in that conflict. The park railings have since been removed. .
Details
The park is in the part of Bideford known as East-the-Water. The c7m tall, rough-hewn granite memorial cross stands at the highest point of the park, overlooking the River Torridge and the old town on the west bank of the river. It is c35m to the east of Chudleigh Fort (Grade II), the remains of a Civil War fortification re-built in the nineteenth-century.
The plain Latin cross rises from a tapering plinth, which stands on a deep granite step. That is raised on a concrete step. The dedications are recorded on the front face of the plinth, reading: THE FORT, DATING FROM THE 17TH CENTURY, WITH/ THE GROUND ADJOINING, WAS ACQUIRED BY PUBLIC SUBSCRIPTION AND PRESENTED TO THE TOWN AS/ A WAR MEMORIAL IN THE YEAR 1921./ THIS MONUMENT IS ERECTED TO THE GLORY OF GOD/ AND IN MEMORY OF THOSE WHO GAVE THEIR LIVES/ IN THE GREAT WAR/ 1914-1918./ THE NAMES OF THE FALLEN ARE KEPT WITH THE BOROUGH RECORDS./ “LIVE THOU FOR ENGLAND,/ WE FOR ENGLAND DIED.”/ AND 1939 – 1945.
The later bronze plaque is fixed to the front face of the cross shaft. Its inscription reads: 1939 – 1945/ IN HONOURED/ MEMORY/ OF THOSE/ WHO GAVE THEIR LIVES/ AND/ DEEP GRATITUDE/ TO THOSE/ WHO SERVED FROM THE/ BOROUGH/ OF BIDEFORD.
Date first listed: 26th July 2017

Sources / Further Reading

SDV350786Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 2013. MasterMap. Ordnance Survey Digital Mapping. Digital. [Mapped feature: #63522 ]
SDV351333Website: Brine, M. E.. 2013. War Memorials. http://www.devonheritage.org/WarMemorials.htm. Website.
SDV356249Ground Photograph: Walls, S.. 2012. Bideford War Memorial Cross. The Materiality of Remembrance. Digital.
SDV356253Website: Imperial War Museum. 2014. War Memorials Archive. www.ukniwm.org.uk. Website. 2907.
SDV359963National Heritage List for England: Historic England. 2017. National Heritage List for England. Historic Houses Register. Digital. 1448216.
SDV360233List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest: Historic England. 2017. Bideford War Memorial Cross, Chudleigh Fort, Chudleigh Avenue, Bideford, Devon. Notification of Consideration of Monument for Addition to List of Buildings of Special Architectural or Historic Interest. Digital.
SDV360312List of Blds of Arch or Historic Interest: Historic England. 2017. Bideford War Memorial Cross, Chudleigh Fort, Chudleigh Avenue, Bideford, Devon. Notification of Addition to List. Digital.

Associated Monuments

MDV11750Related to: Chudleigh Fort, East-the-Water, Bideford (Building)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events: none recorded


Date Last Edited:Aug 17 2017 11:21AM