Making the Memorial March

On November 10th more than 1,200 people will march through Cheltenham to represent the number of people listed on Cheltenham’s War Memorial. Each marcher will be given a name (and image if available) of an individual serviceman or woman to carry.

Whilst in principal this seems like a simple idea a huge amount of research and collaboration was required to create this event. Initially each of the 1,296 men and 1 woman listed on the war memorial needed to be identified and researched. (There were 1,290 original names, 1 added after unveiling in 1921 and 6 added in 2016 during the restoration phase) Continue reading “Making the Memorial March”

VC Paving Stone

A commemorative stone was laid on Sunday 2nd September at Cheltenham War Memorial to commemorate Lt Col Richard Annesley West (VC). The ceremony was attended by members of his family (from as far afield as Australia) and representatives from the Royal Tank Regiment, North Irish Horse and the Royal British Legion. The paving stone was unveiled by the Mayor of Cheltenham (Bernard Fisher) and there was a large civic presence including the Lord-Lieutenant of Gloucestershire (Dame Janet Trotter). A summary of the event written by Cllr Paul McCloskey can be read here.

Queen Street

Queen Street was possibly Cheltenham’s most unfortunate street during the First World War. The community lost a significant number of men varying in age from just 17 to 49.

A new roll of honour for Queen Street has been compiled by local researchers Steve Lewis and David Drinkwater.

To learn more about the impact WW1 had on the community of St Peter’s & The Moors visit our new exhibition (created by SPTM Big Local) which opens at the Hardwick Gallery, St Paul’s Road on 28th August.

 

Wooden battlefield crosses to be saved

Today, Cheltenham Civic Society has received a National Lottery grant of £9800 for a First World War memorials project in Cheltenham. Awarded through the Heritage Lottery Fund’s First World War then and now programme, the project will focus on conserving 23 wooden battlefield crosses currently located in Bouncers Lane Cemetery.

Continue reading “Wooden battlefield crosses to be saved”

Life in Prestbury during WW1

Click here  to view the slideshow exhibited at this year’s Prestbury Village WW1 Fete. Learn more about how the village was affected by the war both on the ‘front lines’ and the home front. (Unfortunately we don’t have permission to add the soundtrack and animations to the internet, but there will be another opportunity to view the film at the Gloucestershire & Racing Remembers event in November 2018). Research and presentation by Rebecca Sillence.

Opening of Holst WW1 exhibition

A new WW1 exhibition at the Holst Birthplace Museum was opened by the Mayor of Cheltenham on Friday. The exhibition focuses on the time composer Gustav Holst spent travelling around Salonika and Constantinople with the Y.M.C.A. teaching music to soldiers in Greece and Turkey.

You can see original letters and diary entries written by Holst,  experience a recreated Y.M.C.A. hut and see the piano at which he composed The Planet Suite during 1914-16. There are also slideshows and video footage which will bring to life the stories as you explore. Visit holstmuseum.org.uk for more information about their programme of centenary events.

 

 

 

Cheltenham War Memorial

Unveiling the war memorial

“They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old: Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn. At the going down of the sun and in the morning We will remember them.”   –  Robert Laurence Binyon, 1914

11th November 1918 is a date that has gone down in history; marking the cessation of fighting and leading to the end of the First World War. The Armistice agreement was signed at Compiègne in Northern France, between the Allied forces and Germany. When the fighting was over many British troops began to be bought home to be reunited with their loved ones. The walk home from Cheltenham railway station marked the transition back into civilian life for many returning servicemen. For others it would be several months or even years before they were demobilised and allowed to return home.

In order to commemorate the lives lost during the 1914-1918 war, Cheltenham Town Council commissioned Messrs R L Boulton & Sons to create a memorial that would enable the people of Cheltenham to remember the bravery of the 1284 Cheltonian men that gave their lives for their country.

Continue reading “Cheltenham War Memorial”

Leave your thoughts at the ‘Listening Stations’

Marking the 100 years since the end of World War One,  residents and visitors will see ‘Listening Stations’ popping up around the town as part of the Cheltenham Remembers project. https://thelisteningstationcheltenham.tumblr.com.

A year-long arts programme of community engagement is focusing on the significance of World War One. As part of this the ‘Listening Stations’ are being created throughout June and July and are situated at locations including The Wilson, Leisure Centre, Cheltenham Library, The Town Hall and Hester’s Way Community Centre.

Continue reading “Leave your thoughts at the ‘Listening Stations’”

St Peter’s War Memorial Re-dedication

These photos were taken at the re-dedication ceremony for St Peter’s war memorial, following resent repair and conservation work. During the ceremony music by local composer local Gustav Holst was performed by Gardeners Lane School and the Big Local Gas Green choir in partnership with the Holst Birthplace Museum. Crosses with poppies were planted and there were also displays and images of some of the soldiers who are listed on the memorial.