HeritageGateway - Home
Site Map
Text size: A A A
You are here: Home > > > > Devon & Dartmoor HER Result
Devon & Dartmoor HERPrintable version | About Devon & Dartmoor HER | Visit Devon & Dartmoor HER online...

See important guidance on the use of this record.

If you have any comments or new information about this record, please email us.

HER Number:MDV104087
Name:Hele School War Memorial


Memorial to Old Heleans who fell during the First and Second World Wars, and during the Troubles


Grid Reference:SX 954 919
Map Sheet:SX99SE
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishExeter
Ecclesiastical ParishHEAVITREE

Protected Status: none recorded

Other References/Statuses: none recorded

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • WAR MEMORIAL (World War I to Late 20th Century - 1914 AD to 1999 AD (Between))

Full description

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

War Memorials Trust, 2013, Untitled Source, WM2565; Photo (Website). SDV351942.

Hele's School memorial is a 13 foot wide wooden Board recording the fallen from the school in the First and Second World Wars. Origianlly erected in Hele’s Grammar School in Exeter it was moved in the 1970's when the school relocated. It is now housed in St Peters High School.
In 1999 it was felt the memorial had been damaged and conservation work was required. Raising funds for this restoration became the Millennium Project for The Old Heleans' Society. War Memorials Trust donated £250 to their appeal to conserve the war memorial.
The memorial is made of English Oak and was created by Harry Hems & Sons in 1922; Harry Hems was a leading craftsman of international repute, but died in 1916. Following the Second World War a further 71 names were added.
The memorial was rededicated on 5th May 2007.

The memorial inscription reads:

'Live thou for England we for England died

To the
proud and glorious memory
of the
Old Boys of the School
who fell
in the Great War
1914 - 1918 1939-1945

For God and King and Right
they gave their all.

Semper Fidelis'

The name of one serviceman who fell in Northern Ireland is also recorded.

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

Hele's School's 1914-1918 war memorial.
The Hele's School War Memorial relating to the First World War was completed in 1922 and erected in the Assembly Hall of the School. Additional panels inscribed with a further 71 names were added below the original Memorial after the Second World War. The wall panelling below the Memorial was carved with military symbols.
In 1959, Hele's School moved to a new site at Southam, Exeter, and the Memorial was re-sited in the Assembly/Dining Hall of the new building there. The years which followed saw much restructuring of the educational system in Exeter and in the 1970s, a new church-aided school called St. Peters emerged on this site.
In 2000, the Old Helean Association reviewed the condition of the Memorial which was then 78 years old and decided to renovate it as a Millennium Project, raising money themselves and receiving a grant from the War Memorials Trust.
2005 has seen the building of a brand new school on the Southam site to which St. Peter's will be moving, taking the War Memorial to yet another a new home.
The Memorial, 13 feet wide and made from English oak, has been described as the work of Harry Hems, an Exeter stone and wood carver of great merit. However, he died on 5 January 1916, two years before the end of World War I. After his death, his workshop continued to be run by his son Wilfred Hems and his partner, Harry Turner Hems. After the First World War, they produced a number of imposing and beautiful Memorials in both wood and stone, which can be seen throughout the British Isles and, like this one, undoubtedly show the influence of the firm's founder, Harry Hems.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV350786Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 2013. MasterMap. Ordnance Survey Digital Mapping. Digital. [Mapped feature: #63556 ]
SDV351333Website: Brine, M. E.. 2013. War Memorials. http://www.devonheritage.org/WarMemorials.htm. Website. Photo.
SDV351942Website: War Memorials Trust. 2013. http://www.learnaboutwarmemorials.org. Website. WM2565; Photo.

Associated Monuments: none recorded

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events: none recorded

Date Last Edited:Oct 22 2020 1:51PM