War Memorials Trust

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Town or City: Caddington
County: Bedfordshire
Country: England
WMT Reference Number: WM2008

Value of grant: £3020.00
Type of memorial: Freestanding
Type of work: Conservation and repair
Grant scheme: English Heritage/Wolfson Foundation Grants
Year: 2007

UKNIWM reference number: 7726

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Caddington memorial cross before work © Caddington Parish Council, 2007The Caddington war memorial is a 12 foot 7 inch Celtic cross constructed of Forest of Dean stone. The cross sits on a stone plinth on top of a two stepped base. The names of the fallen have been hand carved onto the sides of the plinth. The memorial is situated in the Churchyard of All Saints Church on Luton Road in Caddington. Permission to erect a memorial was given on the 4 December 1919. A public fundraising initiative then took place and the memorial was dedicated in 1922. The memorial records 21 who fell in the Great War and 2 from the 1939-1945 conflict. They are unusually recorded by year and date they fell.

In April 2007 an initial application was made to the Grants for War Memorials scheme for support with a conservation project on the memorial. Concerns were however expressed about the structural stability of the memorial and the Grants panel felt it would be inappropriate to fund work on a memorial when the situation was uncertain.

Instead War Memorials Trust discussed the options with the applicant. It was suggested that the a structural survey be undertaken which could be part funded through the Small Grants Scheme. Once the survey had been prepared the requirements for the project would be clearer and a further application could be made to the Grants for War Memorials Scheme for the larger funds required. Therefore in September 2007 on completion of the survey War Memorials Trust Small Grants Scheme paid a grant of £300 towards the cost of the survey.

Caddington memorial cross after work © Caddington Parish Council, 2007This meant that the applicant was able to submit again to the Grants for War Memorials scheme for the second deadline of the year in October. With improved information about the structural situation, which showed the memorial suffering from both horizontal and vertical movement as well as being 10cm out of plumb, the Grants panel were able to asses the application and awarded a grant of £3,020 towards the conservation work. The project undertaken involved disassembling the monument and cleaning the pieces with water and bristle brushes, the excavation of the existing foundations and replacement to a depth of 2 metres below ground level and the re construction of the memorial back to its original site.

The inscription on the memorial part of which is shown in the picture on the left, reads:

In memory of the men of this Parish who gave their lives in the Great War 1914-1918. “Greater love hath no man than this”
Erected by Parishioners & Friends
And in the War 1939—1945

The names of the fallen of the First World War are carved on the remaining three sides of the plinth and those of the Second World War beneath the inscription to that conflict. Those recorded on the memorial include John S Collins-Wells V.C. D.S.O. who fell on 27 March 1918. In 1918 at 37 years of age John Stanhope Collings-Wells was an acting Lieutenant-Colonel in command of the 4th Battalion, The Bedfordshire Regiment. In 1917 he won the Distinguished Service Order at the Battle of Arras. His V.C. was awarded posthumously for his bravery and leadership of men in protecting the rearguard in fighting between 22 -27 March 1918 in the Marcoing to Albert theatre of conflict in France.

Further information

War Memorials Trust reference WM2008
UK National Inventory of War Memorials: 7726

If you have a concern about this memorial please contact the Trust on conservation@warmemorials.org

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