WAR MEMORIALS OF ELLAND
BY TIM PATTERSON
With contributions from David J Glanfield and Alan Stansfield
1 ‘MEN OF ELLAND’ (HULLENEDGE PARK)
War memorials are a familiar sight throughout the British landscape, a focal point that provides a valuable insight into Military, Social and Art History and an unparalleled mark of gratitude to the gallant men and women who fought and died in combat for their country and its monarch.
Elland has many memorials to its ‘Glorious Fallen’ in its Churches, Social Clubs and surrounding villages and Parishes each equally important as the next in terms of commemoration, respect and remembrance. However, it would be disrespectful not to begin with Elland's ‘Cenotaph’ or ‘Men of Elland’ to give it its official name, ‘The Silent Sentinel’ to give it its local name or ‘Tommy’, the name given to the 8” high official ‘Elland memorial’ statuette, a tribute to the breathtaking memorial that stands guard overlooking the Calder and Hebble Navigation from its lofty perch at Hullenedge park.
The Elland War Memorial stands at the entrance to Hullenedge Park over looking Hullenedge Road and Long Wall, gazing across the valley towards Elland Wood with Lowfields in the distance and beyond. The memorial itself was designed by Francis William Doyle-Jones (born West Hartlepool, County Durham 1873. Died. St. Luke's Hospital, Chelsea, London 1938) an avid designer of public monuments the length and breadth of Britain at the time. Doyle-Jones studied Sculpture at South Kensington Art Schools under the watchful eye of Edouard Lanteri and later plied his skills to the design and execution of statues of King George V in both Jersey and Durban. On a matter of local interest he designed the 22 feet high Brighouse War Memorial at Rydings Park which was unveiled on 22nd April 1922. Doyle-Jones also designed the ‘Tom Kettle’ memorial bust and other notables such as the Partick and Whiteinch War memorial in Glasgow.
At Elland, a bronze statue of a WW1 soldier in uniform stands on a white granite plinth to commemorate the memory of the local men who lost their lives in the world wars of 1914-18 and 1939-45. The names of 178 men who died in WW1 and 72 men who died in WW2 are etched into the granite plinth.
The memorial was originally intended to stand outside the Town Hall in Elland town centre but to spare the feelings of the relatives of the deceased a decision was made to erect it at Hullenedge Park at a cost of £2000. It was unveiled on 16th September 1922 by Col. R. E. Sugden. On 29th May 1954, the memorial was rededicated by Col. Sir Alfred Mowatt.
11 Feb 1920 A deputation from the Soldiers Memorial Committee attended before the council to ask permission to erect a cenotaph in the Town Hall Square. It was moved by Councillor Lumb and Seconded by Councillor Dyson. Motion carried.
2 Nov 1921 Permission to erect a Cenotaph in the Town hall square rescinded
1 Mar 1922 A deputation from Elland War Memorial committee attended before the council when the place for the erection of the Memorial was fully discussed. It was moved by Councillor Holroyd JP and seconded by Councillor Player that the parks committee be appointed to meet the War Memorial committee and the Sculptor (who will shortly be in the district) to choose a suitable site in the park for the Memorial.
10 May 1922 Councillors Holroyd, A. Lumb and Player appointed members of the War Memorial committee
26 July 1922 It was moved by Councillor Player and seconded Councillor A. Lumb that plan 1648 submitted by the War memorial committee for the War Memorial in the post be approved. Motion carried
30 Aug 1922 Councillor Dyson reposted as to the sub-committees action in obtaining the necessary stone for the steps leading up to the War Memorial from Messrs. Samuel Gledhill and Sons of Lower Edge in place of Messrs. Paul Normington and Co whose stone was not suitable. It was moved by Councillor Holroyd and seconded by Councillor A. Lumb that the action of the Sub-Committee be confirmed. Motion carried. The question of the wall topping in front of the memorial was referred to the Highways committee with a recommendation that the tops be chamfered stone with spikes inserted.
(extracted from written text by Alan Stansfield)
New Years Day 2010
ERECTED TO THE GLORIOUS MEMORY OF THE MEN OF ELLAND
WHO GAVE THEIR LIVES IN THE GREAT WAR 1914-1919
THEIR NAMES LIVETH FOR EVERMORE
(Extract from ‘The Halifax Daily Courier’18th September 1922 courtesy Alan Stansfield)
The Hullenedge Memorials most decorated Soldier
Private Albert Lee DCM MM
2nd Battalion ThePrince of Wales Leinster Regiment (Royal Canadians)
of 63 Elizabeth Street, Elland
Died 25th August 1918
The most senior officer on the Hullenedge memorial is
Lt-Col James Henry Chadwick DSO
CO 24th Battalion, The Manchester Regiment (The Oldham Pals)
Died 4th May 1917 at Bullecourt
Albert Lee and James Henry Chadwick are buried at Mory Military Cemetery
Private 8615 George Mawe
Died 28-8-14 India from Cholera
8,Thorn View, Elland
This is the last letter he wrote to his parents
They received it after his death
(courtesy Alan Stansfield)
The original design of the war memorial was first presented to the Sutton Coldfield district council in November 1919 and selected to be that towns war memorial under agreement with Doyle-Jones that he would not produce a model like it anywhere else in Warwickshire and only in two other locations in the United Kingdom, one being Elland the other it seems never happened. The cost of £1,650 was met by the ‘Voluntary Subscription Fund’ and by March 1922, Doyle-Jones had prepared his clay model and the Bronze figure which was completed by July of that year. It was to be unveiled on 31st August 1922 but due to delays caused by his stonemason the date was set back to November 1st 1922 where it was unveiled on this day by Field Marshall Sir William Robertson and dedicated by the Bishop of Birmingham. The delay was a fortunate twist of fate which meant that Elland got it first.
The Sutton Coldfield Memorial stands on a 4.6 metre high plinth of Dalbeattie Granite outside the Town Hall in King Edward Square. It suffered great damage and deterioration but was restored to its former glory in 1979.
ERECTED TO THE GLORIOUS MEMORY OF THE
MEN OF SUTTON COLDFIELD
WHO GAVE THEIR LIVES IN THE GREAT WAR
AND THEY DIED THAT WE MAY LIVE
ALSO TO THOSE WHO FELL IN THE WORLD WAR
The War Memorial at Sutton Coldfield
Francis William Doyle-Jones obituary from ‘The Times’ Wednesday May 11th 1938
(courtesy David J Glanfield)
The official unveiling programme
If you would like to see full details of the Unveiling Ceremony please click here
Greater Elland Historical Society
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